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SCAM: Voting for your favourite bank on social media won’t reward you with cash prizes

IN SHORT: Facebook posts ask users to comment, inbox or WhatsApp a vote for their favourite bank in order to receive different cash prizes. But like many other similar posts, it’s a scam.

Messages doing the rounds on Facebook in South Africa claim that users can win various sums of money by simply voting for their favourite bank

Some of these have been posted to Facebook groups with thousands of followers. “VOTE FOR YOUR BANK AND RECEIVE R5000,” one post reads

Some posts ask users to comment on their favourite South African bank, listing popular banks in the country such as Capitec, FNB, Absa and Nedbank.

Others ask users to directly inbox or send a message to a WhatsApp number to receive a cash prize.

Africa Check has previously debunked several bank-related scams doing the rounds on social media. Is this just another one to add to the list? We checked.

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Signs of a scam 

The first red flag, as with many scams, is that the claim lacks evidence. There is no security or guarantee that users will receive any money once they comment or send a direct message. 

A legitimate giveaway might be posted by the official social media account of a well-known business or company, or link to a legitimate survey by an official account. By comparison, look out for giveaways from unknown social media profiles, with small followings, that don’t provide evidence for their prizes – as is the case here. 

Asking users to comment on posts is also a red flag. Social media scammers often ask for comments to drive traffic to their profiles in the hopes of gaining more reach for their posts.

Social media users should also be suspicious of posts that ask users to “inbox” or send a message on WhatsApp. Often scammers do this in an attempt to get userspersonal information, like phone or identity numbers or banking details, with a fake prize dangled in exchange.

We could find no evidence of this type of giveaway on any of the listed banks’ social media accounts. Most legitimate giveaways are posted by a company on their verified social media accounts or website.

And lastly, remember: if something seems too good to be true, it probably is.

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