Face Book Promotion Advance Fee Scam
Message posted to Facebook users claims that the account holder has won a large sum of money in the "face book end of year promotional program".
© Depositphotos.com/Oleg Liubimtsev
There is no prize and the supposed promotion is bogus. The message is a scam designed to trick Facebook users into sending money and personal information to Internet criminals. Those who reply to the email address listed in the scam message will soon be asked to pay various fees that are supposedly required to allow release of the prize money. They may also be asked to provide personal information which might subsequently be used to steal their identity.
Facebook Online International Lottery
From: The Desk Of the President.
International Promotions / Prize Award.
Congratulations: We wish to inform you that you have been selected to receive the sum of 600.000.00 GBP in the on-going face book end of year promotional program.
This Promotion is aimed at encouraging face book users worldwide,
Your face book account was listed among the 31 lucky winners who won 600.000.00 GBP (Six Hundred Thousand BRITISH POUNDS STERLING) each on the Face book group
Your winning ticket number is F#B/13AU/2013
You are hereby advised to contact the face book claims department via email at ( email@example.com ) to file for your claims.
Contact Person : Mrs Dora Moris
E-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org
Do forward the below details to the claims department at quote your winning ticket number to verify your claims.
FULL CONTACT ADDRESS:
MOBILE PHONE NUMBER:
MARITAL STATUS AND AGE:
NATIONALITY / COUNTRY:
YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS:
Be informed that this lottery program is a new innovation by Face book to say A BIG THANK YOU to all our users for making Face book their number one means to connect,
communicate, relate and hook up with their families and friends over the years.
Once again we say congratulations for your success.
Mr. Harry Christopher
This message, which has been sent to a number of users of social networking website Facebook, claims that the owner of the Facebook account has won the sum of 600.000.00 GBP in the "Facebook Online International Lottery". The lottery is supposedly part of the "on-going face book end of year promotional program" for 2013. The account holder is instructed to contact the " face book claims department" via an included email address in order to claim the prize money.
However, the claims in the message are untrue. There is no prize money and the supposed Facebook Promotion does not exist. The message is a scam designed to trick Facebook users into sending money and personal information to Internet criminals. Those who respond as instructed and email the "claims department", will soon be asked to send a fee, ostensibly to cover costs associated with the release and transfer of the prize money. The criminals will claim that the prize cannot be transferred until this fee is paid. Furthermore, they will insist that the fee cannot be deducted from the prize itself for legal or insurance reasons. If a victim complies and sends money to cover the fee, requests for further fees are likely to follow. In many such scams, requests for fees will continue until the victim belatedly realizes that he or she is being scammed or simply runs out of funds to send.
During the course of the scam, the criminals may also ask their victim to provide a significant amount of personal information, ostensibly as a means of proving his or her identity and right to claim the supposed prize. Using such requests, the scammers may harvest enough information to steal their victim's identity.
The scammers cannot even get the name of the targeted entity correct (Face Book instead of Facebook). Another clue is that an official Facebook message would never be sent from a free webmail service owned by Microsoft.
Advance fee prize scams like the one described here are very common. For years, scammers have used email as a method of reaching victims. They have also used letters and faxes, SMS, and phone calls. And, not surprisingly, such criminals have wasted no time in exploiting the popularity of social networking sites such as Facebook as yet another effective means of reaching potential victims.
What ever the vector for attack, people should be very wary of messages that claim that they have won money or prizes in a promotion or lottery that they have never even entered.
Last updated: October 30, 2013
First published: July 17, 2010
By Brett M. Christensen