IN SHORT: An account in the name of a Citizen TV news anchor promises a reward of KSh150,000 – a substantial sum for many – but you have to pay to get it. This is a scam and should be ignored.
The Facebook account Rashid Abdallah Awuor has been running promotions in a Facebook group in Kenya with more than 230,000 members.
The account's profile picture shows Kenyan news anchors and married couple Rashid Abdalla and Lulu Hassan. The two are journalists at Kenya's Citizen TV, a privately owned station that currently has the largest reach in the country.
One of its posts, dated 15 April 2023, reads: “Andika neno Moja la KINGEREZA lenye HERUFI ‘TATU’ ujishindie 150,000 CITIZEN promotion. KIINGEREZA:PEKEE Watu 161WEEKEND PROMOTIONS COURTESY.”
This mix of Kiswahili and English translates roughly as: “Write one English word with three letters and win 150,000 Citizen promotion. English: only 161 people weekend promotions courtesy.”
The account has published the same offer here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here.
But is this Facebook account really run by Abdalla? We checked.
Signs Facebook account is a scam
We checked the timeline of the Facebook account and found very little activity. We did find profile picture updates and group posts promising KSh150,000 to Kenyans who answered a simple question.
We also checked Abdalla's verified Instagram account, where he has 697,000 followers, and found no mention of such promotions.
It is very unlikely that Abdalla would run this Facebook account and not post the same promotions on his Instagram account, given his large following.
A comment by the account on one of the promotional posts reads: “Text ME ON WHATSAPP NUMBER*<<0746389117 >>*** *starting with word "#win * ‘Don't miss out your CHANCE to win Ksh: *150,000*.”
We texted the number on WhatsApp and were asked for personal details, including our full name and M-Pesa number.
We were then sent what appeared to be testimonials from previous winners and asked to send an ”unlocking fee” of KSh399 to another number.
We then received a phone call and a text message urging us to send the money before we could receive the cash.
This clearly shows that this account is run by fraudsters and not the Citizen TV journalist.
To protect yourself from online scams, read our guide to Facebook scams and how to spot them.
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