Why the Better Business Bureau is warning Facebook page owners about a new scam

Are you one of the many people who spend a lot of time on social media? You’ll want to be careful — scammers are devoting a lot of time to it, too.

The Better Business Bureau says scammers are sending messages that appear to come from Facebook. The message says something along the lines of: “Recently, we discovered a breach of our Facebook Community Standards on your page. Your page has been disabled for violating Facebook Terms. If you believe the decision is incorrect, you can request a review and file an appeal at the link below.”

The message may also state that if you don’t act in the next 24 hours, Facebook will delete your account permanently.

The BBB says the email includes a link that appears to lead to Facebook’s website. If you look at it closely, it will have typos, email sender addresses that aren’t related to Facebook and, if you hover over the link in the email (without clicking on it), you will discover that it doesn’t point to Facebook’s website.

Consumer attorney Ira Rheingold, executive director of the National Association of Consumer Advocates, says to simply take a deep breath and check to see who the email is from before doing anything.

“They’re using, theoretically, Facebook standards to scare people into giving up their link and to getting people access to their computers,” Rheingold said. “I think the people who are most vulnerable are those [who are the] least computer savvy and, often times, those are people who are more senior. Not always, but they are looking for people who are unsophisticated and who might fall victim to these scams.”

The BBB said another version of this Facebook phishing scam targets Facebook business pages. The scam threatens to deactivate the account due to a Terms of Service or Community Standard violation.

This time, the message looks like it may come from Meta Business Support and requires the administrator to confirm the account by clicking a link, or it will be permanently deleted.

Once you click the link, you’ll likely be taken to what appears to an official-looking page and prompts you to complete a form to appeal the policy violation. You’ll then be asked for your login email, phone number, name and other details.

The page will ask you to confirm your password when you hit submit. If you do, scammers will have all the information they need to hack your account, according to the BBB.

“Any kind of threat that makes people say, ‘oh my god, I’m going to get cut off from Facebook, I need to take action.’ I think that’s what they’re trying to do.” Rheingold said of the types of scams they are seeing.

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Sandra Jones

Sandra Jones is an Anchor/Reporter for WTOP. She’s been in the news industry for more than two decades.

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