Better screening needed for Facebook ads

facebook police

This article was originally published on Social Media Overflow in 2012.

Facebook should have a better screening process for their ads.

Every now and then I notice scams and other questionable gift card contests and whatnot popping up on Facebook. I probably should have blogged about those earlier. A little while ago I noticed a few actual paid ads that are obvious scams. The two I found that day were for “work from home” type jobs promising you thousands of dollars for easy part-time work that you can do from home. Ads like “$400+ Day – Full-Time Job” may pop up between your usual ads on the side of your Facebook news feed among ads for legitimate business opportunities (some real companies actually do advertise jobs on Facebook). An easy well to tell is by clicking on the ad and seeing where it takes you.

Image lost to time.

The above ad promising the $400+ per day job takes you to a dubious news site called News Daily 7 with an article called “Work at Home Mum Makes $8,795/Month Part-Time” and tells you about some struggling lady who needed money and came across some “work at home kit” which somehow made her start earning money.

Image lost to time.

The article doesn’t even say what it is this fake lady even makes money it just says this:

I asked her about how she started her remarkable journey. “It was pretty easy, I filled out a short form [link removed] and applied for a work at home kit. There is a small activation fee, it’s not really free but it was under $3. I got the Kit and within four weeks I was making over $5,000 a month. It’s really simple, I am not a computer whiz, but I can use the internet. I don’t even have to sell anything and nobody has to buy anything. Companies are constantly recruiting people for this, you should try it.”

Notice the “its” should actually be “it’s”, the grammar in this article is not what you’d usually expect from a proper news site.

There are a lot of warning signs on this site actually, every link on the page appears to link to the same website. Also, if you hover over most of the text you’d think to link such as the “sign-in” and “sign up” buttons at the top of the page are purely decorative and are not even clickable.

Image lost to time.

Only the “Working online From Home The Next Gold Rush.” The link actually does anything and it takes you to the same page that all the other links send you to.  Which is this Earn Income at Home site, which is explained shortly.

The comments on this page are also suspect. There are a lot of recent comments on there from the day I took the screenshots…  Which is unusual to see on a page that has no “add comment” button. I wonder how these people managed to comment, and comment so quickly?

Image lost to time.

This Dennis fellow must be pretty quick to whip up a screenshot and a lengthy reply only 2 minutes after Thomas posted.

Image lost to time.

This is the Earn Income at Home page that all the links send you to.

The fact that all the links on the site seem to be pushing you towards the sign-up form is another giveaway. Any legitimate site would only include the one link and all their other links on their page would link to different pages.

Further down on this page is a collection of banners:

Image lost to time.

And if you click the disclaimers link this is displayed “The trademarks/logos above are the exclusive property of their owners, and their appearance here is in no way intended to imply any endorsement by, or relationship between, the companies represented by the above trademarks or logos, their owners, and Centurion Media Group.” This sounds a bit weird again.

Oh, and if you do click out of this site it brings up this warning:

Image lost to time.

And trying to get out of this takes you to another page. They really don’t want to let you get away.

The next page you end up tries to convince you even further by showing all these photos of people who apparently work from home doing some mysterious activity that somehow makes them get piles of money.

Image lost to time.

The picture here is obviously edited, since some people are nearly black and white and the lady on the right is in full colour. I have a feeling package they are holding might be edited too.

Image lost to time.

I’m not even sure what is happening now, earlier they were talking about something that was under $3 and now they want $9.95?

Kelly Richards, Global Citizen

Kelly Richards is so rich that she lives in several countries simultaneously:

The following site has an article about the UK version of this ad:

What do you think?

Written by Keith Nallawalla

facebook laptop

Time for businesses to finally bite the Facebook Timeline bullet

facebook gaming

Understanding Facebook Games (For Parents)