A fraudulent Facebook Page that calls itself The New York Experience continues to dupe unwary Facebook users into promoting fake New York holiday prizes and divulging their personal information on suspect websites.
Here’s a screenshot of the initial scam post:
If you like and share as instructed and then add the comment “New York”, the page will automatically send you the following private message:
After replying with the word “Verify”, you will receive a second message as follows:
If you click the “Complete Entry” button, you will be taken to one of several dodgy competition websites that ask you to provide your name and contact details, ostensibly so that you can go in the draw for further prizes.
But, alas, the fake Facebook Page has no New York trips to give away and you have no chance whatsoever of winning the promised holiday.
By first getting you to like, share, and comment, the scammers ensure that their fraudulent giveaway posts spread rapidly across Facebook and are seen by an increasing number of potential victims.
They increase this reach even further by tricking people into directly tagging their friends.
And, finally, the scammers will earn commissions each time victims enter their personal details on one of the prize websites. The information that victims provide will be shared with “site sponsors” and unscrupulous marketing companies.
So, after participating, victims will soon be inundated with phone calls, text messages, emails, and letters promoting a variety of suspect products and services.
Fake prize scams are very common on Facebook. This one tends to be a little more sophisticated than many other versions. The use of private messages may make the scam attempt seem more legitimate to some users.
Victims may not initially realise that the private messages are entirely automated and may thus believe that they are having a personal conversation with a Page admin. By establishing what appears to be a personalised dialogue with victims, the scammers may be more likely to convince them to follow instructions.
Moreover, if victims respond to the private messages, the scammers know that they are potentially vulnerable to further fraudulent messages. In a sense, the private messages have established a direct relationship with the potential victim. The scammers can exploit this illusion of a relationship by directly targeting victims via advance fee scams or other types of fraud.
Be wary of any Facebook Page or post that promises the chance to win expensive prizes such as holidays, air travel, cars, or cruises just for liking, sharing, and commenting.
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