A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

BBB: Looking for easy cash? Be sure to pass on this job (don’t share access to Facebook account)

Giving a stranger access to your Facebook account is generally a bad idea. But so-called “ad launderers” are making an offer some people can’t resist: quick, easy cash. It might sound like a good way to make money, but as the saying goes, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

How the Scam Works

You come across a website that says you can rent out your Facebook account for easy cash deposited straight into your PayPal or bank account. Some companies may even claim they only need access to the ad account and therefore your personal account won’t be affected. All you have to do is install a special program on your computer and/or hand over your login and password.

There are several ways this deal can go bad.

First, when the company gains access to your Facebook account, your personal information can be compromised. If you are asked to install software on your computer, you may install malware with it, which can also give a multitude of strangers access to your personal information – including your personal photos and banking information.

In one report to BBB Scam Tracker, a consumer told BBB he had agreed to receive payments via PayPal, only to have the scammer use his PayPal account to spend more than $200 on Facebook ads.

In addition, even if you don’t become a victim of identity theft, your account may be used to help shady companies get around Facebook restrictions.

Companies may use your information to promote casinos, dubious health supplements, or other products that can get your account banned from Facebook entirely.

How to Avoid the Scam

Never give strangers access to your social media accounts. Not only can they post harmful material under your name, they can easily gain access to your sensitive personal information.

Beware of easy money schemes. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If a company promises to pay you for doing nothing, there’s probably a catch.

Never install an unknown program on your computer. This can download malware onto your computer, giving scammers access to all the personal information they need to commit identity theft.

For More Information

For more ways to protect yourself from scams, see BBB.org/ScamTips. If you’ve been a victim of a scam, report the details to BBB.org/ScamTracker. Stay one step ahead of scammers by subscribing to BBB’s weekly Scam Alert emails.

Better Business Bureau

Related Posts

Leave a Comment