Lowe’s email scam promises portable air conditioners


An email or text that uses the Lowe’s Home Improvement name congratulates recipients for winning a “portable BTU air conditioner.”

In July 2022, during a heat wave across United States and other countries, we reviewed an email claiming that Lowe’s Home Improvement was giving away free air conditioners in a raffle. In reality, there was no freebie and the email was a scam. The crooks pretended to be Lowe’s in an apparent Phishing attempt to obtain people’s personal information, such as credit and debit card numbers.

The fraudulent email read: “CONGRATULATIONS! You are the lucky online winner of a brand new [Lowe’s] Participation in the BTU Portable Air Conditioner contest!”

Emails or text messages that use the name Lowe’s Home Improvement and say “congratulations” and that you have won a “portable BTU air conditioner” are scams.

We advise readers never to click on any links or call any phone numbers that appear in these types of fraudulent emails. The links will lead to phishing attempts and the phone calls will put you in touch with scammers who will probably try to extract sensitive data from you.

Fraudulent emails often contain obvious grammatical errors. Also, the “from” email address in scam emails may appear unofficial, another sign of something suspicious. For example, instead of an official email address ending in “@lowes.com”, the sender might have something like “[email protected]”. That wouldn’t be a legitimate email address for Lowe’s.

Advice from the BBB

The US Better Business Bureau (BBB) ​​has published a number of articles on the dangers of phishing. In one of his reviewsthe agency detailed how these types of scams work:

Phishing scams tend to follow a pattern. The victim receives an e-mail, a phone call or an SMS (called “smishing” or SMS phishing). The message prompts the target to click on a link, share information, call a phone number, or download an attachment that likely contains malware. In the case of an e-mail or an SMS, the link frequently leads to a form, which invites the target to enter personal information.

Think twice before downloading anything from the Internet, especially if it is an attachment from an anonymous sender. Scammers hide malware in an attachment and once downloaded, they can wreak havoc on your personal device or steal your personal information. If you are online at home, the scammer can also steal the IP address and then connect to any other device connected to your home Wi-Fi network.

The BBB also offers advice on how to avoid falling victim to this type of scam:

If anything looks suspicious, call the company directly or check the company’s website directly. Don’t click on links in an unexpected email – type the company’s URL into the browser or search the web to find the right website.

Do not click, download or open anything from an anonymous sender. This is most likely an attempt to access your personal information or install malware on your computer.

Query generic emails. Scammers cast a wide net by including little or no specific information in their fake emails. Always be suspicious of unsolicited messages that do not contain your name, the last digits of your account number, or other personal information.


BBB tip: Phishing scams can come from text messages, price offers. March 1, 2022, https://www.bbb.org/article/news-releases/16758-bbb-tip-phishing-scams.

Kirka, Danica and Jill Lawless. “UK breaks record for highest temperature as heat increases.” Snopes.com via the Associated PressJuly 19, 2022, https://www.snopes.com/ap/2022/07/19/uk-breaks-its-record-for-highest-temperature-as-heat-builds/.

McLaughlin, Tim and Brendan O’Brien. “Record-breaking U.S. Heat Wave Bakes Americans.” ReutersJuly 20, 2022, https://www.Reuters.com/world/us/coast-coast-us-heat-wave-threatens-tighten-its-grip-2022-07-20/.


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