Keep an eye out for fraudulent Christmas themed Facebook Pages promising valuable prizes in exchange for liking, sharing, and commenting. Dozens of the fake pages are appearing on Facebook as Christmas draws near.
The Facebook Pages claim that you can win prizes such as Christmas food and drink baskets, groceries, collections of gift-wrapped toys, tech gear, household appliances, and even cars and holidays. Some claim that you can win a “completely free Christmas” worth thousands of dollars.
Supposedly, you can get the chance to win the promised prizes just by liking and sharing as well as adding a comment. Some versions may also instruct you to click a link to “verify” your entry.
Typically, the fake Facebook Pages use names containing the word “Christmas” and feature Christmas and Santa graphics for their profile and cover images.
Alas, the prizes being offered by these Facebook Pages do not exist and those who participate have no chance of winning anything at all.
As with other Facebook like-farming scams, the Christmas giveaways are designed to gather large numbers of likes and shares as a means of promoting the fraudulent Facebook Pages. Once the scammers have thus expanded their potential reach on Facebook, they can launch further scam and spam campaigns that will be seen by a considerably larger number of potential victims.
Some versions of the Christmas scams are also designed to trick victims into submitting their personal information on suspect websites. Any information that you submit on these websites will be shared with dodgy marketing companies who will later flood you with unwanted phone calls, text messages, emails, and letters.
And, in some cases, the scammers may try to trick people into sending them money. They may contact participants and falsely claim that they have won the promised prize, but then demand that the “winners” pay a processing or delivery fee in advance. They may also ask victims to submit identifying personal and financial details, ostensibly as a way of proving their identity and verifying their prize claim.
Many people who participate in these scams believe them to be harmless. However, they are far from harmless. Don’t be tempted to play along “just in case” the giveaways are real. If you do so, you are not only helping scammers but exposing your friends and family to the scams as well.
If one of these fake Christmas giveaway posts comes your way, don’t like, share, or comment on it. Don’t click on it. And let the person who posted it know that the message is a scam.
How To Tell Which Facebook Giveaways are Real and Which are Fake
Of course, there are also plenty of legitimate competitions on Facebook. Especially around Christmas time when many companies launch holiday-themed promotions. So, it’s not accurate to suggest that ALL competitions and giveaways on Facebook are scams.
How can you tell the difference? Click the link below to read a report in which I discuss some ways that can help you ascertain if a Facebook giveaway is a scam or genuine.
Some screenshots of fake Facebook Christmas giveaway posts