IN SHORT: This Facebook account is offering cash to users from different Facebook groups who participate in its so-called promotions. But be warned, the account is run by a scammer.
“Akuna jina ya Girl inaanza na erufi ‘J’ apart from JEDIDAH na JOY,prove me wrong ujishindie ksh.35,000 Sunday gift. Watu 99 pekee,” reads a poorly written message posted by the Facebook account Icon Mentor Ctzn.
This mix of English and Kiswahili roughly translates to: “No girl’s name starts with the letter ‘J’ apart from Jedidah and Joy. Prove me wrong and win yourself a KSh35,000 Sunday gift. I need 99 people only.”
This is one many simple quizzes posted by the account on different Facebook groups with thousands of members.
The quizzes seem to be designed to lure Facebook users into commenting on its posts. The account then reaches out to users in the comment section, saying they have won and should claim their rewards through WhatsApp.
The posts have attracted hundreds of comments and likes. But are the offers to be trusted? We checked.
‘Unlocking fee’ hoax
Africa Check has debunked numerous fake Facebook pages posting simple queries and tasks on groups and asking users to engage privately on WhatsApp to claim their winnings.
To investigate if this was yet another attempt to scam people, we sent a message to the WhatsApp number provided in the comments section.
The message we received back explained that this was a Royal Media Service promotion. Royal Media Service is a Kenyan media company with radio, TV and digital media outlets. But interestingly, none of these “promotions” have been published by any of its outlets.
The message said that the company was giving out KSh35,000 in free “relief funds” as part of its contribution to fighting the Covid-19 pandemic. We were then asked for personal details, including our full name, phone number and county of origin. Giving out your personal information can lead to identity theft.
We were then informed that we were lined up to receive KSh35,000. But we were asked to part with KSh197 as an “unlocking fee” first. This is a clear sign that the Facebook account is being run by scammers.
Read our guide on how to avoid falling victim to similar scams.
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