You might have noticed this lately: whenever you access Facebook, either on your PC or smartphone, you see photos of a sick baby or an injured child. The post gets shared thousands of times on the network and it usually comes together with a text saying that every “like” gets $1 for the baby’s treatment, that Mark Zuckerberg will donate $5 for a hospital, that you have to type Amen or other similar things. Most people think about it and start doubting the post, but they do what it says anyway, because they think it doesn’t really matter.
However, there’s more to it than just one like. This “like farming” technique is the new chain letter and it is based on photos that attract everybody’s attention, with the purpose of gathering as many likes, comments and shares as possible. Every time you click on a post, share it or comment on it, scammers get the chance to collect information about you.
Doesn’t seem like a big deal? Well, in some cases they spam you directly, or they will sell you name, age and other contacts to third party scammers. But it gets worse than that! They can use a page in order to spread malware or some types of phishing scams – which are clever techniques that steal your credit card number, according to a report published by Better Business Bureau.
The best idea if you want to avoid the Facebook scams is to pay more attention to your activity. Don’t have any interaction with any post if you don’t know for sure that its source is legit. Hint: if it says that Facebook, Google or other companies will donate money for likes and shares, it’s probably a scam. If you’re still not sure, you can use Snopes or HoaxSlayer, two sites that debunk social media scams.