IN SHORT: These Facebook accounts are offering prizes and cash on Facebook groups with thousands of members. But they are all imposter accounts posting bogus promotions.
Both accounts post simple queries and tasks and ask users to respond to win the cash. They also use the name of Lulu Hassan, a prominent news anchor for the Kenyan channel Citizen TV.
A typical post from the accounts reads: “Promotion now. KSh35,000 up for grabs. Find the missing numbers: 1,2,3,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,13,14,15. We need 180 people only.”
But are these accounts and their promotions legit? We checked.
Celebrities in Kenya often use their Facebook pages and accounts to update their fans on their daily activities and sometimes post the products they are endorsing. They also post their photos or videos. The fact that both accounts only post promotions is suspicious.
The promotions on both Facebook accounts do not feature on Hassan’s official Facebook page, which has over 1.4 million followers. We also checked her verified Instagram account, which has over 1.5 million followers, and could not find the promotions.
Both suspicious accounts ask users who respond to reach out privately to claim their rewards. We messaged the two phone numbers provided by the accounts.
The first account told us that we had won KSh35,000 but were required to pay KSh899 as a “disbursement fee”. The second account also told us that we had been awarded the same amount and that we should pay KSh433 first as a “registration fee”.
These are clear signs of scam. Legitimate competitions or promotions rarely, if ever, require the payment of a fee before paying out.
To help protect yourself against online fraudsters, read our guide to Facebook scams and how to spot them.
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