The importance of Instagram in connecting business owners and potential customers cannot be overemphasised as social media scammers are taking advantage of this to scam unsuspecting users.
Since its inception in 2010, the world’s fastest-growing app has grown to over 1.15 billion active users. Its open structure, therefore, makes it the best place for scammers. They hide their identity through phoney profiles and accounts, impersonate reputable brands, defraud users, sell fake items or access users’ personal information.
Since Instagram scammers are not relenting but instead getting smarter and devising new strategies to get their victims, here are ways to identify scammers on Instagram.
They don’t agree to video calls
One characteristic of Instagram scammers is that they will never agree to video calls. They will never want to do a video call or conference with you. Scammers are aware of facial recognition technology. Hence, they will not want to be a victim.
Even if it is to confirm the authenticity of the products or services, scammers will never agree to this. It is a red flag, severe any connection to avoid being a victim when this happens. Just as it takes two to decide to work together, it also takes two people to complete a business transaction.
Don’t click on a link you don’t know about. Scammers have hacked into people’s social media and bank accounts by clicking on unknown links. If you can’t verify the link, don’t click it. It is best to be safe than sorry. Ignore every suspicious link. Even if you think it is from Instagram, don’t click. Confirm from your Instagram page.
To confirm links coming from Instagram to you, go to your settings and click on the email from Instagram.
There is a saying that even in Freetown, things are not free. Yes, there are giveaway prices sometimes on Instagram. However, do not let cheap giveaway prices cloud your judgment from differentiating what is real from what is not.
To achieve this, Instagram scammers imitate renowned brands and ask people to like, share, or comment on the post to be lucky winners. When you do this, they have access to your personal information. They can also ask you to follow them to make their scam look authentic.
It is a red flag when the prices are too good to be true. For instance, the sale of iPhone 13 Pro Max for 30,000. It is so unreal.
They hardly humanise their brand
Scammers are ghosts. They don’t humanise their brand. You will not see their face or the face of anyone related to them on their page. So, be wise to notice this.
However, some people fall into this category, but they are not scammers. To not be tagged as one, upgrade your account and add a face and human essence. People won’t get to know or care about you until you give them reasons to. So make your account fun by adding some human experience to it. This will also go a long way in making your brand visible.
They replicate other brands
Be keen on details as scammers duplicate brands to scam people. Ensure you verify the page before doing anything.
They offer an extra quality client experience
Instagram scammers use reverse psychology on the users. They offer the best customer service to cage their unsuspecting victims. They cross their T’s and dot their I’s to perfection, and once you connect to their direct message (DM) and the transaction is concluded, they disappear and block you.
To be double sure, before concluding any transaction, insist on paying on delivery. One thing about scammers is that they won’t want payment on delivery. Hence be careful and assertive.
They don’t have verifiable client
They don’t have user-generated content. They don’t have real feedback on their page, and it is always dry. Whenever they put testimonials, they do not write the name, and when they do, the person’s page is such that you will be sceptical about it.