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Discount codes and email harvesting

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Ketan Swali22/05/2018 17:39:24
1020 forum posts
87 photos

Recently, ARC has been alerted to discount code/voucher websites being used to give the impression that there are discount codes available for use on ARCs website.

However, such discount codes do not exist, and if one was to click on a link on such a site, it will deliver results such as 'no code required', or it may ask you to submit your email address. We believe that this may be a method to harvest your email address, and we suggest that you avoid the use of such sites.

If ARC was to issue a discount code, this would be advised only by us to members who have subscribed to our newsletter mailing list, or though an advert placed by us in Model Engineers Workshop magazine.

ARC has no association with discount code/voucher websites, even though they might give the impression by the use of our logo.

The reason for posting this is that ARC had a call from a customer who was extremely upset for being unable to use a code which did not exist. By bringing this to everyone's attention, it is hoped that we can avoid upsetting other customers.

We have contacted various voucher code websites to try and get them to remove references to Arc from their sites. We wait and see if this has any effect.

Here is a screen shot example of google search result for 'Arc Euro Trade discount code' :

fake discount code search.jpg

In some cases, such sites will ask you for your email address as a method of harvesting, as per example below:

fake harvesting email.jpg

Again, this has nothing to do with Arc Euro Trade Ltd.

Ketan at ARC.

Edited By Ketan Swali on 22/05/2018 17:44:22

David Standing 122/05/2018 19:55:52
1089 forum posts
43 photos


Thanks for letting us know.

Shame, as I am about to order some stuff, and 50% off would have been handy! wink 2

John Rudd22/05/2018 20:10:49
1242 forum posts
57 photos

I really hate websites that offer discounts such as this, and other sites like Wowcher,Quidco and the may save a you few bob,whats in it for them....?

Makes me very suspicious to the point of avoiding them....there's no such thing as a free lunch..

DMB22/05/2018 21:43:33
835 forum posts

Ketan, thanks for blowing the whistle.

John Rudd, I think same as you, if an offer is made, "What' in it for you v. what' in it for me." The answer is almost certainly a darn sight more for you than me.


David Standing 122/05/2018 21:57:50
1089 forum posts
43 photos

If I am going to buy something anyway, and there is a genuine discount code available, damn right I use it!

Douglas Johnston23/05/2018 09:05:25
514 forum posts
24 photos

Just another example of fake news, very sad and must be downright annoying for traders like ARC.


Ketan Swali23/05/2018 09:54:22
1020 forum posts
87 photos

We all love a good bargain.

A month ago, I was shopping for a particular brand jacket and wellingtons. Putting in the brand name with the word discount code in the search engine, revealed several voucher code sites. Some sites said 'no code available', some asked me to put in my email address for future notification (which I didn't), and some provided discount codes. I did try out the codes mentioned on some of the voucher sites, and one or two worked on the wellingtons site, but non on the jackets site.

I must admit that I did not think much of it at the time, until last week when similar search results came up for Arc Euro Trade discount code search... which don't exist. So, if one is lucky to find a genuine discount code, that is great, but if you put in your email address into such voucher code sites, it is difficult to know how your email will be used after harvesting.

Ketan at ARC.

Ketan Swali23/05/2018 10:08:52
1020 forum posts
87 photos

I just tried out doing searches on some of our competitors...'xxxxxxx Discount Codes', and that came up with similar results.!

I also phoned one of these competitors to verify 'two codes' and they too said that they have no specail offer promotions in place through any voucher code sites.

So, it seems that voucher code sites search results is a common issue.

Ketan at ARC.

Neil Wyatt23/05/2018 11:19:59
14723 forum posts
628 photos
72 articles

clivel23/05/2018 17:40:49
257 forum posts
10 photos

For some unfathomable reason some companies do actually use discount codes as a marketing tool, so they are not all scams. One just has to be wary.

A few years ago I decided to purchase ViaCAD 3D after reading good things about it in an online forum. One of the posters mentioned finding a discount code via a Google search and advised others to do the same.

A few minutes later Google had unearthed a range of discount codes ranging between 5 and 50%. The sites which required an email address I ignored, but others simply displayed the code along with an expiry date - no strings attached.
A little sceptical I tried the 50% discount code when purchasing ViaCAD and was pleasantly surprised to find that it worked.

Either way I recommend having a secondary email address that is only used when dealing with suspect web sites, I registered mine with gmail. Spammers and scammers can email that address to their hearts' content.


Neil Wyatt23/05/2018 17:49:45
14723 forum posts
628 photos
72 articles

Plenty of our advertisers use discount codes.

The usually circulate these with their newsletters, targeting loyal customers and no doubt hoping to 'nudge' them into making a purchase they have had in mind for a while!

My experience of online 'code' websites is that the great majority are either bogus sites and even the genuine ones have a majority of 'duff' or out of date codes.

My advice is to subscribe to the newsletters of GENUINE advertisers/suppliers to the hobby, under the GDPR they won't share your data without explicit permission and will remove you from their lists if you ask.


Frances IoM23/05/2018 18:15:55
537 forum posts
22 photos
like others I've had such email requests - however some state that they use MailChimp to manage their list - looking at Mailchimp's privacy policy indicated you had to ask + complain under US law - that re privacy just means a joke - look at which side of Atlantic is going for farcebook. I suspect little will really change re misuse of mailing lists but the real problem, esp in US where decisions on for example health insurance, is the misuse of information given in good faith for one valid reason and used elsewhere - I'm now suspicious of the official messages that sharing NHS data with American companies will be in our best interests.
Mark Rand23/05/2018 22:07:42
581 forum posts

So when are you going to offer a discount code that works, Ketan? cheeky

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