5. Facebook customer service scam
Several people have filed reports with police about being scammed while trying to contact Facebook. So researchers with NPR did a Google search for "Facebook customer service," the number 844-735-4595 was the top result. (This search result has since been removed from Google).
Image: Google search results for Facebook Customer Service
NPR then had a company that specializes in phone fraud call the number that showed up in the Google search. The person who answered the call claimed to be a Facebook representative but was actually a fraud.
Here's how the call went:
The fraudster answered the phone by saying, "Thanks for calling Facebook." The researcher told the fake rep that he was locked out of his Facebook account and needed help getting back in.
The scammer said for the account to be unlocked, the researcher needed to go to either Target or Walmart and buy an iTunes card. Once he purchased the iTunes card, he was to call back and give the fraudster the 16-digit security code located on the back of the card. He would then be given the password to unlock the Facebook account.
This is basically an elaborate iTunes card scam, which is common. The Federal Trade Commission warned people in 2016 that scammers are frequently ripping people off through these iTunes gift card hoaxes.
The phone number found on Google also turned up in other places over the past year. It was even circulating on Facebook itself, on certain pages where people ask for help.
What you really need to know is that there is NO phone number to contact Facebook. A member of the company's Help Team made that announcement on one of the pages that a user was asking for help.
So if you do an online search for Facebook customer service, don't call any number that shows up in the results. The only way you can actually contact Facebook is through its help center.
Now that you know there isn't an official Facebook phone number, don't make the mistake of calling a fake number found online. It can only lead to trouble.
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