In a difficult phase where Mark Zuckerberg has pledged to clean up Facebook, several fake Facebook and Instagram accounts are masquerading as Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg, deceiving users into sending money to collect bogus lottery prizes.
According to a report by the New York Times, multiple cases have occurred where Facebook users were contacted by scammers claiming to be the top executives of the company to swindle money from unsuspecting users.
Such accounts usually put up the famous executive’s profile photos and names which are sometimes misspelled (like Mark Zuckerbergr and Sheryl Sandbeerg) or use their middle names to evade Facebook’s checks.
They tricked the individuals into sending dollars in the form of iTunes gift card redemption codes or in cash – to claim the prize money that they have ‘won.’
The investigator conducted by New York times found 205 Facebook and Instagram accounts posing as Zuckerberg or Sandberg and nearly 51 of them were running sham lotteries to swindle cash from innocent people.
However, these accounts were removed by the company after the report was published. “It’s not easy,” said a Facebook spokesperson. “We want to get better.”
Fake accounts have been a longstanding issue for the social media company. During the recent Congressional hearings too, Zuckerberg had to face the heat from politicians regarding this issue.