Facebook can be a wonderful place full of opportunities to learn new things, share the special moments in your life and reconnect with old friends. But there is also a dark side to this popular social media platform: It can be a hotbed for Facebook scams, fraud, misinformation and disinformation.
To seem legitimate, scammers create fake pages to use for Facebook giveaway scams. It's usually a page that looks like it belongs to someone you'd trust: a big company or a famous person like a popular celebrity.
These pages look legitimate and trustworthy. Scammers steal logos, photographs, and other graphics to make the page look like it belongs to the person or company they're imitating.
They will then, contact those in the comments or send a message to tell them they've won a prize.
So how can you tell the difference between a legitimate prize win and a Facebook giveaway scam? Here are a few ways to spot a Facebook scam:
1) Learn the Red Flags of a Scam
Start by knowing the signs of a scam. Facebook page scams will contain many red flags. For example, look out for poor grammar and spelling that you'd never expect on a professional site, along with requests for money or for other personal information. Stay clear of any win notices that include these red flags!
Spam is sometimes spread by clicking on bad links or installing malicious software. On other occasions, scammers gain access to people's Facebook accounts, which are then used to send out spam.
The age of the page
Watch for new or newly made pages. If the page has been made within the last day or the last week with very few followers, this is a sign something isn't real.
2) Check Whether the Facebook Page Is Verified
Facebook verifies the identities of organizations and celebrities that are likely to be faked. Pages that Facebook has verified, like the Eagle 100.9's Facebook page, have a blue check mark next to their name on their profiles. You can be confident that verified pages are legitimate.
Note, however, that not every legitimate page has been verified. Currently, companies cannot request that Facebook verify their pages. You won't find that blue check mark on the legitimate pages of many large and legitimate websites because Facebook hasn't verified them yet.
3) Check the Company's Website for Legit Facebook Pages
If you want to find the legitimate Facebook page of your favourite companies, start with their websites rather than a Facebook search. If you follow a link from the company's site, you can be confident that they endorse that page.
4) Call and ask
When in doubt, call the business and check if the inquiry is real. If it feels too good to be true, it often is.
If you wouldn’t do it in the physical world, don’t do it in the digital world.