Robert Siciliano Identity Theft Expert

It’s just a matter of setting up a fake Facebook page and marketing it to a few people who then send it to their friends and it goes somewhat viral. The Ikea scam hooked 40,000 unsuspecting victims with the promise of a $1,000 gift card.

PC World reports In the past months, fan pages have popped up all over the social networking site, offering too-good-to-be-true gift cards. There’s the $500 Whole Foods card, the $10 Walmart offer, and the $1,000 Ikea gift card. The Ikea page put these gift card scams on the map last month, when it quickly racked up more than 70,000 fans before being snuffed. Facebook has also taken down Target and iTunes gift card scam pages in the past few months.

To get the gift card the users must enter names, address and email address. They are then pointed to other pages where real products and services are offered. From there they enter credit card details if the offer appeals to them.

The root of this scam is believed to be perpetrated by affiliate marketers who make money on click throughs and create a ruse to gather data on potential customers also known as a “sucker list.”

In general, there shouldn’t be any traditional identity theft as it relates to new account fraud as long as requests aren’t being made for Social Security numbers, and the “victim” isn’t giving one out. Otherwise I don’t see this scam as harmful, but is certainly deceptive.

1. Get a credit freeze and follow the steps for your particular state. This is an absolutely necessary tool to secure your credit. In most cases, it prevents new accounts from being opened in your name. This makes your Social Security number useless to a potential identity thief.

2. Invest in Intelius identity theft protection and prevention. Not all forms of identity theft can be prevented, but identity theft protection services can dramatically reduce your risk. (Disclosures)

Robert Siciliano Identity Theft Speaker discussing Facebook Hackers on CNN.

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