Look before you Like on Facebook: spotting 'like-farmer' scams

Look before you Like on Facebook: spotting 'like-farmer' scams

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Don't click "Like" again on Facebook until you hear this newest scam that's making the rounds.

Scammers are taking advantage of people's quickness to like just about every post in their feed - especially posts that tug on your emotions or state a call-to-action.

The scammers are after your banking and personal information or they're trying to trick you into sending them money.

It's called "like-farming."

Scammers post an attention-grabbing story for the sole purpose of cultivating likes and shares. This gives the scammer a large pool of people to steal from or send to malicious downloads.

So, what type stories do scammers start with to trick people into liking and sharing? Ones that tug at your emotions.

Here are some examples:

  • "1000 shares and this baby girl gets her heart transplant for free."
  • The "please don't ignore" posts.
  • "Like and see what happens" to the people trapped in a truck surrounded by lions

...nothing ever happens when you like and share.

Then you might see products being promoted or the scammer might sell the page information in an attempt to get your credit card data.  In fact, if you go back through your history of liked posts, you might find that some of them have morphed into a post you would not have liked in a million years!

Scammers know how to soar under the radar on social media. The story they first post has nothing dangerous about it. It's edited and made malicious only after the post gets a certain number of likes and shares.

So, don't fall for those attention-grabbing posts like this one: "Like and share to win a Chevy Camaro - pick your color and click the link" - it's a survey scheme to get more page likes and get you to give up personal information.

Remember, companies don't give away valuable items for nothing on the street, just because you like it.

So, use the smell test on social media when reading these type posts. If it smells fishy, don't click "like", or click on any links you see, either.

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