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Website promising free cash another scam on Kenyan Facebook groups

A website is being promoted on Facebook with the claim that the Kenyan “government has set aside KSh2 billion to be distributed equally to all Kenyan citizens aged 20 and above”.

Another post sharing the link asks: “Have you received your share of KSh3,300 yet from the KSh2 billion set aside by the government? Hurry and get your cash sent to your account now.”

Data from CrowdTangle, a public insights tool owned and operated by Facebook, shows the link to the website was posted on Facebook over 1,000 times and shared nearly 600 times, reaching more than 2.8 million users. 

But the link does not lead to a government site. It instead goes to a suspicious website similar to others debunked by Africa Check. 

We proceeded with caution.

Paint-by-numbers scam

On the website, users are asked to follow a step-by-step process to apply for the money. But it is suspicious from the beginning.

For example, despite saying the funds are meant for Kenyan citizens only, answering “No” to the first question – “Are you a Kenyan citizen by birth?” – still allows you to proceed to the next step

This step requires users to declare which mobile money service they use.

Questions like “Do you really need the cash?” are also included and clicking either “Yes” or “No” still appears to “qualify” you for the cash.

In order to receive the money, you’re asked to share the link by sending it to 12 WhatsApp groups. Usually, a requirement to “share” a giveaway like this is a clear sign of scam.

It’s an example of engagement bait – posts on social media that ask people to interact by liking, commenting or sharing. The more people do this, the greater the scam’s reach.

And no such cash giveaway has been announced by the Kenyan government and neither has it been reported by any local media. It’s fraudulent, an attempt to trick hopeful Kenyans. 

For more information, read our detailed guide on how to identify online scams. Dancan Bwire

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