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::UPDATE:: AVOID App Coupon FRAUD!!

::UPDATE AT BOTTOM!::

Ok so I HATE just hate to talk about coupon fraud and a specific way people are doing it because I don’t want to give anyone any ideas. Yes, there are people out there like that. :(

BUT, there was an app featured this morning on a very large network and a few other places it has been  mentioned. the past few months a I am getting more and more emails about it. I felt like I should address it.

Remember how we have learned that if we actually know and understand the “life cycle” of a coupon, we know that the brands require a manufacturer coupon to be physically redeemed by the store in order for the store to get reimbursed.

PLUS we know that the brands only distribute a certain number of coupons to be used and on the coupons it says; coupons are void if copied, scanned, transferred, purchased, sold, prohibited by law, or appear altered in any way. 

Well there is an app that allows you to scan a coupon and upload it into their system to be accessed by ANYONE and scanned at the stores. WHOA! Anyone see a problem with this right away???

Using this app this woman STOLE $2,000 worth of merchandise from Kmart. SHE STOLE IT. Using this app and a coupon that was NOT for just anyone to use, and to use over and over again she made TONS of transactions with this coupon. She should be in JAIL. It is disgusting. Thanks Jill Cataldo for the link.

YOU CAN NOT REPEATEDLY USE A MANUFACTURER COUPON OR COPY A COUPON. 

I am sick of hearing about and seeing this, so I took to the apps Facebook page to ask how they are doing this? Shockingly the CEO started arguing with me and actually refused to answer a YES or NO question and skirted around the question. Really?

So I had to help him answer the question: 

Ted, since you refuse to actually answer the question and instead continue to give everyone the run around, I will help you answer it… YES, there are manufacturer coupons in the app, but you don’t encourage or “support” the use of them. You try and remove them but you don’t get them all, and people are still able to redeem them with an uneducated cashier thus committing coupon fraud and stores getting ripped off. Also, since Target coupons state; coupons are void if copied, scanned, transferred, purchased, sold, prohibited by law, or appear altered in any way. They do not accept coupons in this app but you are still letting people scan them and add them in. Again, promoting coupon fraud. You didn’t think this app through, and launched it too soon without proper knowledge of how coupons actually work. Because of people like you, coupons are being limited and even done away with in many stores. The responsible thing to do would be to pull this app until you can figure out a way to control the coupon fraud that you are “supporting.”

OH, and Ted? Do you not look at your own app?? There are manufacturer coupons all over it. PLUS clearly fake coupons that are posted. He says, “manufacturer coupons cannot be shared or redeemed through the app. Period.” Again, it is like he does not use his own app. There is nothing stopping you from pulling them up and using them in a store. What I think is happening here is a little bit of “it depends on what your definition of ‘IS,’ is” They are going to skirt around the issue and not really answer the question.

Today I called and talked to Target Corporate and they said: “You can find our Target coupon policy here.  As is stated there, coupons are void if copied, scanned, transferred, purchased, sold, prohibited by law, or appear altered in any way. Therefore we do not accept coupons in this app.”

But, regardless, this app continues to promote and push the use of fraudulent coupons on cell phones. They also tell you how to get around the Starbucks rewards program and teach you to bypass CVS’s coupon policy. They also try in the Terms of Service to make sure you know that they are not responsible for any of the content on their app. I am not a lawyer, but if I was providing fraudulent coupons but telling people I am not responsible for how they use them, I can bet you I would be shut down.

Why do I care? Because when people are scamming the system and abusing coupons, it hurts ALL of us. There are less coupons, stores give you a hard time, the value of the coupons is less and on and on. If you coupon or like to use a coupon, even at a restaurant, this HURTS YOU!!!! Like those free panties at Victoria’s Secret coupons you get? Well, they don’t like this app either and I bet they stop sending those out :(

::UPDATE::

I wrote this post up and left for my daughters softball game Friday. At the game my cell phone rings and it was the CEO of Snip Snap. Creepy? Just a little. I would love to know how he got my CELL PHONE NUMBER weirdo. After a short conversation where I realized quickly that he was an amateur wannabe extreme couponer who says cliche things such as “well if it does’t beep” and “the cashier let me” that there was no point in continuing the conversation as he clearly has no clue.

After the weekend I was hoping that Snip Snap had cleaned up their app. Apparently NOT.

We still have manufacturer Kroger catalina’s that you can attempt to redeem. Wonder how Huggies feels about this!

Oh, and thousands of coupons where you can clearly read the fine print telling you that you CAN NOT reproduce, copy or distribute on the internet. Buy hey, rules are for the little people right?

Oh and look! More manufacturer coupons! :(

Finally, I am sure Kroger had no intention of their FREE personalized coupons to be used more then once or twice or in some cases on Snip Snap, 4,000 times. I wonder how long it takes before Kroger stops sending out rewards coupons because of this idiot.

Oh and look, and apparently Ellen Harmer (her name is all over the Hallmark rewards) uploaded her Hallmark Rewards voucher for all the world to use. So sad.

Finally to close, on Jill’s site today the CEO left this comment which sums up the kind of guy he is: “Is it in violation of its policy? I suppose. Does that mean you shouldn’t do it? Not really.”

What a guy! :(

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Comments

  1. jodi says

    A customer was just telling me about this at work today! I couldn’t remember the name of it or I would have downloaded it. Glad I got bored and was browsing Facebook! Guess I won’t be downloading that app!

  2. Zack says

    Ugh. Another company trying to make a quick buck by breaking the rules. You’re right, crap like this does hurt all of us. It makes everyone more hesitant about putting out coupons. Hopefully these scammers get shut down!

  3. Mom of Two says

    You go girl! Thanks for being so passionate about apps like Snip Snap and those that abuse coupons in general! I work for a major retailer and see on a daily basis people abusing coupons as a way for them to make a living. They buy multiple quantities of items at one store and then go to another store to refund them where they get back all their money plus the amount they saved by using the coupons. This become a problem for the stores because items like pain relief products and health care items have to be defected out and thrown away. You can’t resale healthcare items once they leave the store due to the liability of them being tampered with. This results in pure financial loss for companies. Not to mention the added payroll it cost to have the employees restock those returned items. It’s so frustrating!

  4. Roxana Guy says

    Thank you! I used to teach couponing classes till I found out some of my students were doing this, stealing out of Sunday papers and harassing retailers. I am certain she probably has this app, too.

  5. Colleen says

    I have this app but never use it. I actually haven’t even opened it up since I got it-good thing! If you have been a couponer in the last 3+ years, you can see just how much worse the coupons have become. That’s all thanks to coupon fraud (and the much hated show I refuse to mention by name) ;)

  6. Allison says

    Now this just makes me sick! Thank you for keeping us informed! I have seen this app before and wondered if it was ligit or not! Thanks for the info about it and I will NOT be downloading it!

  7. Chrystal says

    I downloaded snip snap about a month ago as it seemed like a lot of people are using. I found the whole app odd, as yes you are using coupons multiple times… I thought originally it was just a place to help store “your” coupons. Then when I found out they get shared, I didn’t want to use it. Seems like most of the retailers don’t accept it anyways.

  8. christiana says

    It is scammers like that, that make it hard for us honest couponers. Companies will eventually get fed up and take away coupons altogether and then I am gonna be upset. I am glad you are vocal about coupons. Thanks.

  9. Sarah says

    So…what about eBay? Is it ethical to purchase coupons when you’re “paying” for the person to find, sort and clip the coupons? They always say “you’re not paying for the coupon, just my time.” Sometimes different areas get higher value coupons. What’s your thoughts on this?

        • CJ says

          Ebay’s coupon policy is changing as of Sept 1. Sellers will only allowed to sell very little (I can’t remember the exact wording) so you will not be finding much there to buy.

  10. Peggy says

    Since I am old and don’t know enough about all the new techie stuff coming out so I don’t know what you are talking about BUT, I commend you for speaking out…..People will always try to cheat the system…dishonest couponers are making it hard for the honest ones….soon, there will be no coupons accepted….when I see these people abusing coupons, I want to smack them!! So, watch out for me if you are dishonest!!!!

  11. Caro says

    Some people just to copy Target IP ones. Once, I trade some qs, and this individual sent me 6 target IP photocopies!

  12. BlueOak says

    Clearly duplicate use of coupons is outright theft (just like scanning your coupon at the self-serve register and putting a different piece of paper in the coupon slot is) and the users of the app know it is.

    No different than if you grabbed a candy bar off the shelf and stuck it in your pocket or downloading ‘free’ movies from bit torrent sites. The rest of us pay for this theft.

    If this app is in the Apple store, I wonder why Apple has not taken it down since it clearly facilitates fraud? (Yet another reason to avoid Android – very little oversight in their app stores.)

  13. Belinda says

    Just out of curiosity (spellcheck) Do u wish you had never done “that show” Thanks for all you do to keep coupons here on earth :)

    • Tiffany says

      Yes and No. We did it before they got crazy and honestly it helped a lot of people and showed them you could save a lot of money and I am grateful for that. BUT it got out of control and it didn’t have to :(

      • says

        I really wish tlc would have done a better job explaining how to actually use the coupons instead of focusing on the stockpiles and check out. Great jobs and thank you for speaking out:) I think everyone reading this should leave reviews in the App Store so it keeps low start and no one will want to download it:)

        • Lindsay says

          Yep, but if they did that it would not get the ratings they strive for. I hate that show. I will watch it once in a while to see how others are couponing, but it’s not common to get that much stuff for so little. Especially since my area does not double/triple. That show makes the good couponers look greedy. SMH

  14. Cindy G says

    So I read the sorry that you reference, but if it was a K-Mart coupon, and the store manager allowed her to use it over & over, how was she stealing? I don’t know much about this App so I googled it & what I got from all the sites….some very respectful sites at that, say that stores partner up w/the app. What am I missing….how is this fraud if its the stores own coupons??

    • Tiffany says

      It was a coupon for a specific person, that was uploaded into the app. It was not intended to be used over and over again. No stores have partnered with this app. Can you leave me a link to where you are seeing this? Target and Kroger have specifically said they do not support this app or take the coupons from it.

  15. Keegan says

    I went to show my phone to a cashier at Target to use their own coupons and the cashier, before even taking my phone, told me ” if it’s a snip snap, don’t bother. We refuse to take those anymore.” I had never heard of it. Thank you for writing this, it was very educational.

  16. Rachel says

    If you are a android users, I suggest flagging the app in the app store via the very bottom of the page. Select other and say that they are actively frauding businesses. I just did.

  17. VB says

    If stores were actually teaming up with this app why are the coupons not supplied by the stores? It seems like people are uploading pics of their coupons they received. (As far as what I have seen and heard online…I never fownloaded the app since it seemed fishy) For me personally I would not want to upload my coupon that was sent me for fear of losing the privilege of receiving future coupons from the company.

  18. VB says

    Tiffany did you download the app? If so could be how he got your cell number. These apps allow people access to your private info but people throw caution to the wind and accept terms and conditions allowing apps to have access to content on your phone/tablets etc.

  19. stephanie says

    Tiffany – have you tried contacting Kroger corporate to find out about the Catalinas because that seems to be a huge issue! with all of the other talk in the news about how people are getting in trouble for things they post to the internet I do not see how this app could be out of that realm. Catalinas do seem just like fraud – it is blatant theft of the store you are using it at. Shoplifters are prosecuted – how is this any different?

  20. Charity says

    This is BIZARRE and I don’t know how the app is still in use! Who has the authority to shut it down? It’s FRAUD.

      • says

        I can’t believe he actually *called* you! I guess since he doesn’t care that he has ILLEGAL coupons on his site, stalking and harassment doesn’t phase him either.

  21. lisa says

    I agree this is bs, you should ask that everyone goes to the app store andreport this ap as other type coupon fraud, Maybe if enough ppl report it it will be taken down.

  22. Renee says

    Thank you! I had downloaded the app thinking that it would help me, because a well known couponer suggested it. I thought it would work like the Target coupons you can get sent to your phone when you sign up for their text program. I haven’t used it because I didn’t understand how you could without giving the store an actual coupon…like you mentioned above. The store can’t get credit if they have nothing to show for it otherwise stores could scam companies. I don’t really know of any store that would accept something like that. I am glad that you wrote this…I just uninstalled it. I love couponing but you’re right the scammers out there are making it harder and harder.

  23. Joanne says

    I’ll definitely avoid that app ~ I won’t be the one standing in front of Jesus on judgment day admitting that, “Yes, I misused coupons so that I could scam some free peanut butter.” Not this gal!

  24. QNT says

    Thank you for your post. I think it is important that people understand coupon fraud. It is not fair to the people that actually use the system correctly then get punished for all the people that take advantage of it.
    Thanks Tiffany!

  25. Shari says

    Never heard of this app until I read this. Never used coupon apps because I don’t have a smartphone. I just started couponing and I do it the old fashion way by purchasing a paper and cutting out the coupons or print off the internet from coupon site, the major ones or directly from the manufacturer site. Didn’t even know store accepted coupons on cell phones, most don’t. The scary part of this is not only the coupon fraud, but the fact that this guy was able to get your cell phone number and call you, why couldn’t he email you. That in itself is very scary & odd.

  26. Gail says

    Thanks for taking the time to fight coupon fraud. I did download this app several months ago when a coworker suggested it would save me money. After downloading and looking at it closely, I realized that it couldn’t be on the up and up and decided I did not feel right about using coupons that were meant for one time use. Hopefully, Apple and Android will remove this app since it promotes fraudulent use of coupons.

  27. Kristi Gilleland says

    A lot of people LIKE to call. Maybe it was only that he was one of those ‘calling is easier and people appreciate it’ people. Personally I loathe phones and want to be emailed.
    I msg’ed you on Twitter too – skullaria – this has the potential for UPC manipulation too – big time – and then that could enter a broad user base and be a disaster.
    Do you remember that Facebook Viral Marketing Fiasco a few years back with the ‘free Pantene’ and other products? The company could not control the prints on those and then they ended up not honoring ANY of them, and I think that company got sued too. Every day users got caught up in that because those first coupons that went out WERE legit – but the whole thing got blamed on consumers in the end at the register.

    I just got it, and there were TONS of FREE KROGER product coupons. I didn’ t get ANY print coupons this month – I wonder if this is why? It wouldn’t surprise me.

    Well, we can warn folks but we can’t make em change their behavior.

    I like the idea for the app. I just have no idea how one WOULD secure an app like this without working with the vendors to control redemptions & approve the coupons that were offered.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] bad. pretty much you are photocopying coupons. AVOID App Coupon FRAUD!! – MyLitter – One Deal At A Time this is the link to an article on it. this was posted on HCW facebook page. SWAGBUCKS! . [...]

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