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3 Facebook scams spreading like wildfire

3 Facebook scams spreading like wildfire
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What online site lets crooks, hucksters, and scammers potentially reach more than a billion people with a single post? You guessed it, Facebook. Right now, three specific Facebook scams are rampant. If my News Feed is any indication, normally “smart” people are falling for them. Don’t be one of those people.

1. "Secret sisters" holiday gift scam

Here's a fantastic deal: Buy a $10 holiday gift and send it to one person. In return, you'll get up to 36 gifts back. Who wouldn't want to get 36 gifts, especially if they're these must-have tech gifts?

This generous offer is courtesy of something called the "secret sisters gift exchange." There's also a similar post going around focused on a book exchange for kids, but the basic premise is the same.

The instructions clearly detail a classic two-deep pyramid scheme. You begin by sending a gift to the first secret sister. Then, move the second secret sister to the first position, send the instructions to six other ladies, and on and on. At the end, you’re promised gifts in about two weeks. Well, how lucky are you!

Stop right there. With each level, you need more people to keep it going. By the time you hit the 11th level, you need the entire population of the United States participating to make it work. Even at the 4th or 5th level, the odds of getting even one gift back after you send one are very slim.

 Then there's the fact that pyramid schemes are illegal and might get you fined or imprisoned. The federal government and many states also have laws against these kinds of schemes.

How to avoid this scam:

  • Keep in mind that anyone offering a huge return on any investment is probably trying to fool you.

  • You don’t get something for nothing. Of course, if it sounds too good to be true, it is.

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