Tag: facebook

Facebook Fake Product Testers

The idea of being paid to work at home trying out new products such as iPhones and then being allowed to keep the products free of charge, is very appealing.

It is clearly not going to happen, but large numbers of people are attracted to these sorts of adverts.

These adverts can appear on any social media platform and in the press but are mostly seen on Facebook currently.

There are Marketing companies that will on occasion pay people to try products, but this is very limited, pays very little and you don’t get to keep anything valuable. Plus, the demand for such ‘work’ is so high that the companies involved don’t need to put out mass advertising – they generally have a list of people they trust to do such testing according to the rules they set.

So, almost all such adverts (possibly above 99%) you will see asking for product testers are scams.

Typically, the scammers ask for personal information as part of registration e.g. name, address, contact numbers, date of birth, bank details etc.

They can sell this to other criminals for identity theft purposes or get you to pay a registration fee or similar small charge then keep you hanging on, while they do everything they can to make money from you.

Some of these scammers are Marketing companies who try to stay just inside the law by occasionally giving a free gift to someone.

They make the money – they win. You lose.

If you have any experiences with these scams do let me know, by email.

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Facebook Privacy Check

Facebook can help you to review your privacy settings.

This feature is called Privacy Check-up and you can access it by clicking the small down triangle icon at the top right corner of the Facebook screen. You click “Settings and Privacy” then “Privacy Check-up”.

Things you can review in Privacy Checkup:

  • Advert preferences
  • Who can see what you share
  • How to keep your account secure
  • How people can find you on Facebook
  • Your data settings
  • How to keep your account secure

Everyone should go through these options carefully and restrict access to your account information, restrict who sees your posts and so on.

The less the criminals can see of your activity the safer. You do not strangers seeing your birthdate, phone number, relationship status etc.

The section on keeping your account secure contains good advice on having a strong password and turning on alerts means you will be warned if here is an unusual login to your account.

Many people use Facebook to login to other services – this saves on having extra logins but means Facebook knows a lot more about your activities. You can also review which APPS you have given permission to access your Facebook details. If you’re not sure why an APP needs that access then revoke that permission.

Stay safe on Facebook and periodically use the Privacy checker to make sure all is in order

If you have any experiences with these scams do let me know, by email.

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The Facebook Messenger Scam

There are numerous Facebook based scams with people pretending to know you or trying to get you to click a link to something containing malware.


This latest one involves the scammer impersonating someone you know and sending you a Facebook messenger message such as “Is this really you in this video”.

The scammer wants you to click the link to see what video is being talked about.


If you do click, your get a screen asking you to login to Facebook.


This is fake of course – if you input your login and password these are sent to the scammer who can then change your password and takeover your Facebook account.


It can be easy to just click a link from a ‘friend’, but it can be dangerous and scammers know to pretend to be someone you trust.

Scammers have a variety of ways of getting your friends email addresses so take the time to read messages from friends and do not assume they are genuine unless you check.

Be very careful before clicking any link in an unsolicited email message or Messenger message, text message or any other online message.

If you have any experiences with these Facebook scams do let me know, by email.

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Facebook and Bad Adverts

Facebook seems to be a little worried about the abundance of fake and/or misleading adverts on its platform.

These adverts usually occur when a scammer takes over someone’s Facebook account and pays for a lot of adverts using the stolen account.

Those adverts can be anything, but are typically for:

  • Fake products
  • Real products but of very poor quality
  • A pop-up business that will disappear before customers have time to complain
  • Scam pages that pretend to be government or FBI or major retailers but simply steal the users confidential information
  • Clickbait pages

Facebook say the problem is ‘low quality’ adverts  and they give three examples:

  1. Engagement Bait

These are your typical ‘like and share’ posts, re-purposed as adverts. Facebook does not like them as they can show false popularity.

  1. Withholding Information

Adverts designed to make people click by using clickbait are also disliked as they are fake content.

  1. Sensationalized Language

Adverts which use exaggerated headlines or lead to content not matching the headline are poor. The use of superlatives is fine where they are justified by the content.

Facebook says it will penalise anyone who infringes the rules.


Facebook say that adverts considered to be low-quality will see reduced distribution in the advert auction, or will be disapproved.

Multiple adverts marked as low-quality may impact the performance of all adverts from that advertiser.

If you are running a Facebook campaign and use what Facebook consider to be low quality adverts then your campaign will likely cost more and perform worse than if you create better more honest adverts.

If you have any experiences with Facebook scams and problems do let me know, by email.

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International Grand Committee

Facebook came under fire from lawmakers from nine countries at the inaugural hearing of the “International Grand Committee on Disinformation” held in London.

The landmark event saw 24 representatives from Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, France, Ireland, Latvia, Singapore, and the UK meet to debate issues including data protection, online disinformation and fake news.

The social network’s founder Mark Zuckerberg was repeatedly asked to attend but refused and sent Richard Allan, the company’s vice president of public policy for Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Facebook is under investigation in various countries for reasons including Russian interference in the American elections, data privacy issues, unfair treatment of companies competing with Facebook, secret deals and more.

Referring to a report from a Facebook engineer that Russian IP addresses were accessing three billion data points a day on the network, committee chair Damien Collins, asked Allen: “If Russian IP addresses were pulling down a huge amount of data from the platform was that reported or was that just kept, as so often seems to be the case, within the family and not talked about?”

Allen said that the claim was misleading and taken out of context, but Facebook later issued a statement confirming the issue was looked into and told The Guardian “the engineers who had flagged these initial concerns subsequently looked into this further and found no evidence of specific Russian activity”.

The New York Times recently published an in-depth investigation which claimed senior Facebook executives had “ignored warning signs” about the negative impacts of its social network, and in some cases even sought to suppress or deflect criticism about its practices.

A representative from each of the seven parliaments participated in a formal signing ceremony for a set of ‘International Principles for the Law Governing the Internet’.

It seems there is much to do to bring Facebook’s behaviour into the open and force it to become an honest company.

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What Facebook Must Do To Regain Trust

In the beginning, Facebook was a simple online service for people to connect to others – from their college, neighbourhood, shared interests etc. but it grew huge and into a monopoly position.

Rather than trying to be a force for good in the world, Facebook has been all about self-interest, money, greed, destroying any opposition and growing ever more dominant.

At the same time, it has deliberately ignored warnings over damaging content and damaging practices, ignored user privacy concerns and ignored its negative impact on society. Facebook has repeatedly been disgraced for bad behaviour but still continues in the same way.


Facebook must transform itself and its people.

  1. Understand that the content created by the users belongs to the users not to Facebook. We choose to let Facebook use that content but for our benefit not for allowing greed to grow ever worseand our privacy to be undermined.
  2. Respect theuser’s wishes over use of their content.
  3. Do not use data for reasons other than specified to the users.
  4. Do not track users on websites or services other than those owned by Facebook.
  5. Stop trying to make Facebook more addictive or appealing to teenagers and children.
  6. Protect children from damaging content and use panels of citizens to determine what material should and shouldn’t be allowed.
  7. Make all processes over advertising clean and transparent.This will give away a little of Facebook’s advantage but it is necessary.
  8. Facebook is not a publisher in the same sense as a newspaper, radio or TV station, but it is publishing content and must share responsibility for that content and any damage that may come from inadequate controls on content and access.
  9. Be open, honest and transparent about challenges and what is being done to fix them.
  10. Stop targeting ‘competitors’ – you must not abuse your monopoly position. Use it to help people not to destroy businesses you don’t like

Now is the time for Facebook to transform itself from a pariah into a respected business.

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