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WARNING: Experts reveal latest heartbreaking Facebook scam
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Have you ever heard the saying, "If it seems too good to be true, it probably is?" Unfortunately, when it comes to social media sites like Facebook, the saying is closer to, "If it pulls at your heartstrings, it's probably a scam."
The latest Facebook scams are hiding within fake emotional stories.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - We all see the sob stories on our Facebook feeds. They usually include images of abused animals, babies with rare birth defects, or families affected by disasters.
We are asked to "like" and "share" these messages, which are often accompanied by links to donate to help the needy.
While most of us have become slightly desensitized by these emotional posts, we still offer "reactions" such as a crying face emoji, a heart, a "like" or, sometimes, a share or comment of well-wishes.
There are truly needy people out there with real stories of pain, hope and faith - but some of these stories are simple scams designed to get users off Facebook and onto questionable sites.
According to CBS, posts that claim Facebook will match donations are scams.
A scam called "like farming" uses attention-grabbing images, emotional stories and ask for donations. To donate, the scammers send you away from Facebook, where they steal your personal information.
The viral scam posts get shared several thousand times, with each new viewer a potential victim.
Digital media expert Tanya Barrios explained: " What they're trying to do is scam you. It's more in terms of any links that are associated with those posts is really going to be the scam part of it, because on Facebook itself, there's not really data being collected on you. It's [about] getting [you] off of Facebook - that's their goal."
Social media experts compiled a simple checklist to see if a post is legitimate or a potential scam. If they are guilty of the following, they are most likely scams:
The post claims someone has cancer or other serious disease and needs money for surgery.
It claims Facebook "has decided to help," by donating a certain amount of money for "likes," "comments," or "shares."
It typically asks a Facebook user to comment, "Amen," at the end of the post.
Another danger is the use of stolen images for these scams. Children's photos are often stolen and abused for scamming purposes.
If you see a post you believe to be a scam, contact Facebook immediately. The site will remove the post and investigate further on its own.
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