Because Facebook is the biggest social media platform in the world, scammers often use it to take financial advantage of unsuspecting people. However, the least users can ask of Facebook is not to actively promote these criminals. Yet that’s exactly what happened recently when the social media giant mistakenly verified a bitcoin con artist posing as Tesla CEO and tech entrepreneur Elon Musk.
According to a report in The Verge, the Facebook fan page has about 153,000 followers and only a handful of posts on the page, including the bitcoin scam. However, what makes this so galling is that the page wasn’t even really claiming to be Musk, saying “this is a fanpage, uploading tweets etc from him.” However, Facebook verified the account anyway, potentially putting many more users at risk of falling for the scam it was promoting.
“It’s unclear when the page was verified,” The Verge noted in its report. “Facebook’s verification rules state that the company has ‘confirmed that the Page or profile is the authentic presence of the public figure or brand it represents.’”
As usual, it’s important to be skeptical of what you read on Facebook. If a financial offer seems to be too good to be true, it likely is — even if it comes from a page that Facebook has given the thumbs-up.
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