When you see a ‘Suggested Post’ on your Facebook newsfeed, it means that someone has paid Facebook to get their advert in front of you. It means that you have – based on what Facebook know about you – been deemed suitable to see that particular advert.
It’s called targeted advertising, and it represents Facebook’s primary business model. Basically, it’s how Facebook make their money.
Because Facebook has allowed that advert to be placed in front of you, you couldn’t be blamed for thinking that they have probably vetted the advert in some way, to ensure that – at a minimum – the advert doesn’t lead to a scam.
But you’d be wrong.
We’ve reported on a number of dubious adverts appearing as a ‘Suggested Post’ on Facebook in the past, but recently we’ve noticed a surge in such posts promoting a variety of different work-from-home scams that all promise to hold the secrets to instant wealth.
In most of the cases we’ve come across, the Facebook ‘Suggested Post’ leads to a fake news article promoting a Binary Options work-from-home scam. Such scams claim to hold the secrets to getting rich using a type of stock investment known as Binary Options. Binary Options is a form of investment where investors predict whether a stock will rise or fall in a short period of time. However, most financial experts liken the often unregulated investment platform of Binary Options trading to gambling.
Of course there are no ways to “beat” the system, but this hasn’t stopped a surge of different get-rich-quick scams from claiming otherwise. These schemes try and lure victims into opening accounts with specific brokers, meaning those behind the get-rich-quick schemes get a commission for signing up new members. We discuss this type of get-rich-quick scam here.
And many who operate these schemes are turning to Facebook to promote their scams. And the Internet’s largest social networking site so far seems to have little problem ‘suggesting’ these scams to their large user base.
In fact many of these scams used the identities of celebrities or media outlets to trick Facebook users into signing up for get-rich-quick schemes, as you can see from the screenshots above.
An increasingly large number of users are blocking Facebook adverts using plugins like FB Purity that are designed to prevent adverts appearing on the Facebook website. While Facebook have been actively trying to prevent these plugins from working, can they really blame their users from installing them when Facebook themselves continue to show such disregard to the legitimacy of the adverts it insists on cluttering our newsfeeds with?
Let us know your thoughts below.