Viral 'gift exchange' chain letter delivers false promises - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

Viral 'gift exchange' chain letter delivers false promises

(Source: AP Images) (Source: AP Images)
(KFVS) -

Leave the gift giving to Santa, because a chain letter you've probably seen or posted on Facebook may not be able to deliver.

According to the website snopes.com, the Secret Sister Gift Exchange says you will receive 36 gifts in exchange for one $10 contribution.

The process in the chain letter describes sending one present, valued at $10, and then receiving 36 gifts in return. You would send your $10 gift to the first "sister" on the list, move the second on the list to the first spot and then put your name in the second spot.

Sounds fun and cheerful, right?

According to Snopes, very few people report actually receiving all 36 gifts.

Also, the website points out that according to the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, gift chains are illegal under Title 18, United States Code, Section 1302, the Postal Lottery Statute.

In fact, the inspection service has a section on chain letters, referred to as "get rich quick" schemes. You can read it by clicking here.

It says this about high-tech chain letters:

"Recently, high-tech chain letters have begun surfacing. They may be disseminated over the Internet, or may require the copying and mailing of computer disks rather than paper. Regardless of what technology is used to advance the scheme, if the mail is used at any step along the way, it is still illegal."

The inspection service does point out that chain letters asking for items of minor value, like picture postcards or recipes, may be mailed because "such items are not things of value within the meaning of the law."

So, good-spirited holiday cheer or gift exchange dud? You decide.

Download the KFVS News app: iPhone | Android

Copyright 2015 KFVS. All rights reserved.

  • NewsMore>>

  • US arrests, accuses woman of acting as Russian agent

    US arrests, accuses woman of acting as Russian agent

    Monday, July 16 2018 4:09 PM EDT2018-07-16 20:09:37 GMT
    Monday, July 16 2018 8:05 PM EDT2018-07-17 00:05:33 GMT
    (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber). U.S. President Donald Trump, left, listens to Russian President Vladimir Putin during a press conference after their meeting at the Presidential Palace in Helsinki, Finland, Monday, July 16, 2018.(AP Photo/Markus Schreiber). U.S. President Donald Trump, left, listens to Russian President Vladimir Putin during a press conference after their meeting at the Presidential Palace in Helsinki, Finland, Monday, July 16, 2018.

    Federal authorities have arrested a Russian woman accused of conspiring to infiltrate American political organizations at the direction of a senior Kremlin official.

    More >>

    Federal authorities have arrested a Russian woman accused of conspiring to infiltrate American political organizations at the direction of a senior Kremlin official.

    More >>
  • Trump questions US intel, not Putin, on Russia 2016 meddling

    Trump questions US intel, not Putin, on Russia 2016 meddling

    Monday, July 16 2018 12:57 PM EDT2018-07-16 16:57:16 GMT
    Monday, July 16 2018 8:02 PM EDT2018-07-17 00:02:00 GMT
    (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko). U.S. President Donald Trump, left, shakes hand with Russian President Vladimir Putin during a press conference after their meeting at the Presidential Palace in Helsinki, Finland, Monday, July 16, 2018.(AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko). U.S. President Donald Trump, left, shakes hand with Russian President Vladimir Putin during a press conference after their meeting at the Presidential Palace in Helsinki, Finland, Monday, July 16, 2018.
    Trump says he raised election meddling with Putin, but says both sides to blame for bad relations.More >>
    Trump says he raised election meddling with Putin, but says both sides to blame for bad relations.More >>
  • DECISION 2018

    What you need to know for Tuesday's runoff election

    What you need to know for Tuesday's runoff election

    Monday, July 16 2018 7:59 PM EDT2018-07-16 23:59:50 GMT
    (Source: WSFA 12 News)(Source: WSFA 12 News)

    Alabama voters head to the polls Tuesday for the 2018 statewide primary runoff election.

    More >>

    Alabama voters head to the polls Tuesday for the 2018 statewide primary runoff election.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly