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Taco Bell's Unlock the Box promotion offers customers a chance to win a free PlayStation Vita. However, not all winners received the free Vita that they were promised.
Since January, Taco Bell has sold $5 "Buck Boxes" containing a meal and a prize code. Customers redeemed the code online and were forwarded to a page that said "Congratulations, you won. … No really, we’re not kidding." As CBS reports, though, many of these people received an e-mail from Taco Bell weeks later that said they weren't valid winners.
Taco Bell says that the system crowned too many winners. The bug was due to tampering by unknown parties.
"We have learned that during a short period of time on January 30th, some people entering our Unlock the Box promotion erroneously received a message suggesting they had won a PlayStation Vita, pending verification," said the company. "After a thorough investigation, and an additional review by the independent company administering the promotion, it was confirmed that these entrants viewed these messages as a result of others who attempted to gain illegal entry and defraud the system. Unfortunately, during this time period some saw a confirmation screen but were not valid winners."
You'd expect Taco Bell to throw a bunch of free crap at these customers way as compensation but that's not what they're doing. Instead, they're giving them another shot at winning a Vita.
"We are therefore giving those consumers who viewed erroneous messages a second chance to win by automatically entering them into a separate drawing to win a PS Vita. All winners will be notified and their names posted the week after the end of the promotion."
Taco Bell plans to continue the promotion through March 11th as planned.