Balochistan Voices has unearthed a scam that targets Facebook pages under the guise of paid advertisement.
Facebook pages, especially the verified ones, get private messages on Facebook from dubious accounts which offer them to post an advertisement in return for a hefty compensation. The scammers offer up to $1,050 per week in return for putting advertisements on the Facebook page. The scammers even offer to make the payment in advance.
So far so good!
The enticement of advance payment of $1,050 is hard to resist for the admins of the Facebook pages. They right away agree to put ads on their pages and show their eagerness to start the process.
At this stage, the scammers ask the Facebook page admins to sign up for a paid advertisement system on Facebook. Scammers ask for the email address associated with their account and send the page admins a link where they have to sign up using their email and password.
The page admins who fall for this scam sign up on the given link. This results in making the scammers one of the admins of the page. Then they waste no time in removing the original admin and take control of the page.
Once in control of the page then they can sell it to others or use it for paid promotion in different ways possible.
Who are the scammers?
The scammers use fake Facebook accounts to run this elaborate scamming scheme. These accounts use pictures of real people and use a Pakistani name if they are targeting Facebook pages in Pakistan.
These Facebook accounts look like genuine accounts and non-suspecting Facebook users are not able to determine if they are scam accounts. Once the objective of the scamming is achieved then they deactivate these accounts and there is no way to track them.
The same group of scammers also use emails to target the admins of the Facebook pages.
They obtain the email addresses of the page admins and offer paid advertisements via email. Then they try to trick the page admins in getting control of their Facebook pages.
Too good to be true
Facebook page admins should know that the paid advertisement offers are too good to be true.
Offering to pay $1,050 per week is too much even from the standards of well-established Facebook pages. This should be a red flag for the Facebook page admins and they must be able to determine that this is a well-crafted scam.
Secondly, a thorough inspection of the accounts of the scammers will also show that these accounts are fake. This requires a moderate level of social media literacy on the part of the Facebook page admins.
Got an advertisement Offer, what to do?
If you are a Facebook page admin and got a similar offer then this is what you should do.
Report the page to Facebook right away.
Do not share any personal information with the scammers, not even your email address and username of Facebook account.
Do not click on any link sent by the scammers in private messages. They can send you a phishing link and trick you in giving away private information.
If you have ever received such scam offers and want to share your experience with us then email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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