Social media scams are abundant online and many people fall victim to them daily. They lose money, get cheated or become a laughing stock for others due to these scams. Elders, youngsters, tech-savvy people, ordinary users – everybody falls prey to social media scams easily. Here are a few common social media scams you might have come across while using the internet. Learn how to identify the scams and how to safeguard yourself from becoming a victim of one in this article.
“Spin the wheel and win an IPhone,” “Share this post with 25 people and win $100,” “free gift card to shop if you finish a puzzle” – these are the most common offers that are actually social media scams.
They usually occur around festival times when people send wishes to everyone. Spreading the scam message becomes much easier for the hackers then. What happens when you click on a social media post to spin the wheel or share a post with everyone you know?
Malware enters your system and corrupts data or steals important information from your device. They make you believe you actually won an iPhone, may even ask to pay a certain amount to claim it while you eventually receive nothing.
The amazing discount you get for finishing an easy puzzle actually tracks everything in your system when you are doing the puzzle. The discount will not exceed a dollar or two and you will most probably be made to purchase a costly item to avail that discount.
How to identify such scams?
Whenever you come across such hard-to-believe offers, check the authenticity of the post. If the social media post is posted on the Facebook account of a particular brand, check for the same on the brand’s website. It is most definitely a scam if the post asks you to download something, and has slight differences in terms of the brand logo, color, etc.
If the scam is advertised only on social media and the staff of the brand don’t know about it, or the marketing campaign doesn’t use them, it is likely to be a scam. Do not fall prey to such scams and waste your time and effort, waiting for the non-arriving gift while endangering your system to malware attack. The easiest rule to remember in order not to become a victim of such a scam – never believe offers that sound too good.
Fake accounts and friendships
Social media posts and friend requests from people faking to be someone else are common these days. You attend a seminar or a conference and like the presenter and start following them on social media.
Later, you receive a friend request from them and connect with them to stay in touch for months until you find out they never befriended you. The scammer had already taken all data from your social media account to commit various harms on the black web and cut your connection when you confront them. Having only several pieces of your personal details, for example, your date and place of birth and your full name, fraudsters can commit identity theft and do a lot of harm to your reputation and finances.
Always connect with strangers you like to follow or add, by talking to them directly. Do not accept friend requests from strangers blindly, even if they are celebrities or famous people. Use Nuwber to check the real details of the person you are connecting with, see if they are real, or if social media accounts they are using to connect with you aren’t fake.
Read internet guides about nonexistent people accounts and fake accounts to know how to handle them and identify them if you come across one.
If you really want to befriend a person or a stranger you got impressed with, talk to them personally and send them a friend request with a specific message. Make them do the same to ensure the friend request is from the actual person you want to befriend.
If you come across a fake account, inform the concerned person or report the account to the social media platform. Google about impersonation accounts on social media to increase your knowledge about the topic. Awareness is the key to avoiding becoming a victim of any scam.
Fake live stream scam
Hackers actually conduct some live streams when the official websites do it. Those who don’t know about it enter the fake live stream and stay on it for a long period giving enough time for the malware to enter and sabotage their device system. Beware if there is a difference in the way the brand website looks and the actual Livestream page. Learn to understand it is a fake Livestream if the quality of the video and the sound is bad.
Avoid paying for Livestreams, unless it is definitely from the authentic website. Never share any personal information during the Livestream to stay on the safer side. It is important to use the internet wisely and responsibly with alertness to avoid various social media scams.
A social media post will advertise that you can learn a course about anything and start earning immediately. Share market training scams usually promise the social media post viewers to earn money within ten minutes of attending their course.
The purpose is to make the user think they are lucky to come across such an ad and it will change their life completely. But it is never the case and such posts will ask you to pay for the entire course in a day or two. They will probably disappear after collecting money from several people in a short time.
The best way to avoid such scams is to check about the brand or the company offering the services. Check their website, contact the people who offer testimonials to see whether they are real and do not believe offers that are too good. Do not share personal information on social media posts while clicking on the offers, no matter how minute the detail is so that you don’t fall victim to personal ID theft.
Do not share such shady posts with other people and make them become the victims of the scam. Do not recommend any group or forum on social media to others unless you have used them for at least a fortnight and feel there is nothing illegible about them. Remember to always do your research fisrt.
Social media scams are rampant these days as most of us depend upon it for primary entertainment. Increase your knowledge about social media scams by reading about them to stay alert when you come across such scams. Educate others so that they don’t become victims themselves and point out the dangers they might face in the future using the internet irresponsibly.