Scammers are every where! They can be found at brick and mortars, calling over the phone, in the emails, and even in text messages.
Anywhere people are found and their information can be accessed, you can bet scammers are also lurking around. They want to take what’s yours. The threat is real!
With the increasing popularity of people using social media and voluntarily saturating the world wide web with their personal information. The risk of someone stealing that personal information or even their money also increases.
In this article, we’ll discuss one Phoenix local, who fell victim to an Instagram scam and how you can avoid being scammed on social media.
One of our Instagram Family Members reached out, accusing a business profile, we reposted on our feed, of being a scam account.
We, at Dark Phx, take all accusations of bad business seriously and we do our best to conduct thorough investigations to help other locals of Phoenix, Arizona make informed buying decisions and to help business owners get a fair shot in business.
We made a post regarding these allegations, notifying the accused @tatts_by_julie and the accuser @deramus24, requesting proof and response to the allegations.
@deramus24 not only provided receipts that supported her claims, but another follower also came forward indicating they were a victim also. @tatts_by_julie has yet to respond to our request for response.
We were giving access to the direct message conversation between @deramus24 and @tatt_by_julie that started the afternoon of Sept 10th and ending the morning of Sept. 20th. The pair discussed and organized a tattoo appointment for Sept. 23 at 2pm. The appointment was to be secured by deposit via cashapp of $75.
It appears @deramus24 was given several alternative payment options to pay the deposit, after being told the original Cashapp account had reached it’s monthly limit.
After Apple Pay and another cashapp account was unable to be located, a third cashapp account was given that resulted in a successful payment of the deposit.
@tatts_by_julie then instructed a confirmation email would be sent. @deramus24 followed up twice regarding the confirmation email she did not receive. After finally receiving the email, she called the tattoo shop listed and was informed this tattoo artist was not working in the shop. She then confronted @tatt_by_julie with this new information. We know she saw the message, but was no longer responsive to @deramus.
It was in this moment, that she knew she had been the victim of an internet scam.
3 Ways You Can Avoid Being Scammed on Social Media
Be alert of the strangers that reach out to you online.
If someone reaches out to you online that you don’t know, either they want to sell something to you, they want to get to know you, or they are looking to take from you. It’s your job to filter the people, who you give access to you.
My recommendation is to examine the accounts of new followers. Check if you and the stranger share any mutual followers. Glance their bio and images, to determine if they are possibly attempting to sell you a product or service. Take a look at the type of comments they receive on the account.
A couple of great questions to ask yourself while conducting your reseach are, “how did this person find me” and “what could this person want with me”.
Be knowledgeable about the commonalities found in scammer accounts.
Most of the inauthentic, scammer and bot, accounts found on social media follow a common structure. Here are a few things, I’ve noticed about these types of social media accounts. They often have a lot of random posts in a short span of time, with little to no genuine engagement. Their number of followers is usually drastically lower than the amount of people they are following. When they reach out, they often have grammatical errors scattered throughout their messages.
A couple of common account themes know for scamming are the spiritual healer accounts, the money making accounts that claim you can make $5k off $500, and the wanna be sugar daddy/mama accounts. I’m sure you’ve came in contact with at least one.
Educate yourself on typical phishing tactics.
If you’ve been working in corporate America, at some point you learned about email phishing. Scammers realize most people aren’t going to fall for a stranger requesting information. They will take the deception further, if need be.
These internet scammers are willing to pose as representatives of major companies, you may very well do business with, in hopes of persuading you to give them what they need. They steal their logos, their communication templates and anything else that can be used to support their deception.
If you are ever doubting the legitimacy of a communication, contact the company on the platform they own to confirm they sent it.
If you’ve been a victim of bad business or a victim of bad consumerism and you would like us to investigate and share your story, contact us at email@example.com.