A Facebook post is going viral that claims to offer a “completely free Christmas” to those that like and share the post. The post features a Christmas tree with a large pile of presents in front of it.
The post was created by a Facebook page called “Christmas Daily Gifts” and we can confirm that this is just yet another online scam designed to deceive Facebook users into following a page and interacting with a post.
ONE WINNER WILL GET A COMPLETELY FREE CHRISTMAS!!! Who wants it?
LIKE AND SHARE TO WIN
Comment ” I WANT”
Winner must like this page:
At the time of writing, nearly a quarter of million Facebook users have shared the post.
It’s a classic example of like-farming, and despite this being a prolific type of scam on Facebook, there is never any shortage of willing Facebook users sharing the spammy posts “just in case” it’s real.
Like-farming refers to the process where spammers will use a combination of exploitation and deception to lure Facebook users into interacting with a Facebook post. In this case, it’s deception – the guise of a competition when no competition really exists. The Facebook page isn’t really offering a free Christmas, this is just bait.
The image of the Christmas tree was taken from a 2016 Daily Mail Online article about a mother criticized online for “overindulging” her 3 children online.
Scam like this can be potentially dangerous to those that engage with these posts. In many cases, the posts are later edited (once they have gone viral) to include links to external webpages that are designed to harvest a visitors personal contact information for the purposes of spamming them.
Alternatively, those that share the post may be contacted by the page and told they have won in an attempt to extort money out of them (the scammer will claim the victim needs to pay an upfront fee to claim their prize.) That’s known as advance fee fraud.
Additionally, those that follow the page may be subjected to other types of posts it publishes at a later date that could potentially lead to a whole host of online spam or Internet scams.
As usual, we recommend being extremely suspicious of pages that claim you can win expensive gifts for liking and sharing a post. Always look out for –
Pages that don’t identify themselves. Is there a company name, brand name, street address or actual contact information behind the page, or is it anonymous? Is it the blue ticked official page for a brand? The page in question here lacks any contact details or information on the people behind the page.
Page creation date; When was the page created? Is it a new page? For example, the Facebook page in question here – Christmas Daily Gifts – was only created 2 days before this post went viral, on October 27th 2017.
What other posts does the page post? What purpose does the page have, or does it seem like its only goal is to lure Facebook users into sharing or liking its posts with competitions.
Remember that it’s actually against Facebook’s terms of service to force users into sharing a post onto their own timelines, since the page admins cannot see who did this (providing your privacy settings are locked down.)
As usual, please don’t like and share this posts. Not only do you put yourself at risk, you put your friends at risk as well, since you’re sharing the post to them.
Read more about like-farming here.
Read this post to read two real life stories from users who engaged with posts like these.