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  • Writer's pictureChristy Ragle

What’s With All The Meta Spam?

If you operate a small business Facebook page (owned by Meta), chances are you have gotten bombarded with lots of fun messages and notifications!

“Your page is in danger of being permanently deleted.”

“You are in violation of trademark rights.”

“We are forced to permanently lock your page!”

“Need to confirm that this page belongs to you.”

“Your dog is ugly and your cat’s breath stinks.”

Ok… I made up that last one. But the others are real messages that we have intercepted on behalf of our clients in recent months. Each one sounds so scary, especially to a small business that relies on its Facebook page for client communications and marketing.

What’s worse, the messages contain MAGICAL links and promise to FIX EVERYTHING with just one click! The problem is these are nefarious links that are NOT designed to magically fix everything. They are usually either linked to some type of scam, or they actively plant viruses on your computer system.

These folks have gotten sneaky, too. They started out using important-sounding names like Meta Advertiser Solutions, etc. But now they’re using people’s names. Today we had one using a pretty common name, so I could not even report it. They are also going back and commenting on old posts and reviews. (Although the review/recommendation responses aren’t new… who among us doesn’t have an admirer who happens to be the prince of an obscure country who would just love for us to connect with them!?)

Why is this happening?

Other than the fact that some people do icky things… no one really knows. I’m part of a Meta Advertiser Forum (the real deal, not a spam group), and the admin from Meta says that the issue is known by Meta and they are actively working to mitigate it. How are they doing that? Well, we have noticed that they are REQUIRING page admins to have two-factor authentication on their accounts. I know it’s a pain but do it anyway.

What can I do to make it stop?

1. Report it. Move the message to spam, and if you can get to the “person’s” account, report that, too.

2. Turn off automatic messages for the time being. I know it’s handy to have an auto-reply to people who message you on the Facebook business page, but that seems to make it worse.

3. Never ever NEVER EVER click on the links. If we all do this AND let our fellow business owners know not to click the links, this will stop working and the folks and bots will move on to another scam, preferably one on MySpace where it doesn’t affect the rest of us.

If you are managing a business/organization page, please accept this virtual hug from me and know you are doing the right thing by ignoring all the threats! Let’s all pray that these folks make the naughty list this Christmas and get a stocking full of coal.

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