Apple products are loved by their users, and perhaps loved almost as much by scammers trying to cash in on their popularity. Today we’ll take a look at yet another scam in the name of Apple on Facebook: iPhone tester giveaways.
Last summer we wrote of fake iPad tester giveaways on Facebook. Today’s focus, however, is on fake iPhone tester scams that are cropping up all over the social network. This new batch is a little different than the iPad variant we discussed last summer.
While the fake tester scam last summer led people to sign up for things they didn’t want, the iPhone 6 tester scam we’re seeing currently is simply designed at gaining likes for a page.
A page will appear out of nowhere claiming to be from Apple. They’ll post a couple of photos of Apple products and claim to be giving away a free iPhone 6 to “testers.” Facebook users eager to get a free iPhone will share and like the image without even bothering to check to see if it is legit. Some even express doubt while sharing it, with comments such as, “Just in case it’s real…” This sharing frenzy easily gains the page tens of thousands of likes.
What’s the purpose?
The biggest question is why such a page would exist in the first place, especially if they aren’t linking to an external page or selling anything. As this Yahoo UK article spells out in detail, these fake pages are worth money to the scammers. Someone selling one of these fake pages can earn a couple of hundred dollars by selling a Facebook page with 100,000 likes. The business which purchases this Facebook page will change the name and erase all evidence of the fake giveaway. They will then have an built-in “fan” base of 100,000 people. It’s becoming rampant on Facebook.
We’ve written about quite a few variants of this problem recently, as you can see in the list at the bottom of this article. One version has claimed to be giving away products due to them being unsealed. Another version posts a photo and prompts users to type something in the comment to “see what happens next.”
The graphic below is from a fake Apple Facebook page which only posted 2 images and was set up only a day before this article was written. There is no doubt this page will be gone within a few days. They have no affiliation with the real Apple, nor does Apple mention any such tester promotions anywhere online.
Apple isn’t giving away free iPads or iPhones on Facebook. Period. Liking or sharing pages such as these are only making scammers rich.