Free flight ticket scam spreads on Facebook

The scam goes viral on Facebook

Recently, you might have seen posts on Facebook about major airline companies, such as Delta, AirAsia or Emirates Airlines offering airline ticket giveaways.[1] However, free plain tickets turned out to be a surprise not only for the social network users but to the mentioned airline companies as well. It did not take too long for the truth to be revealed – it was a mere online scam. Free flight ticket scam strikes again on Facebook

Free plain ticket scams appear every year

Getting a desired thing or product for free always attracts attention, even for a moment. Thus, getting an opportunity to fly to another country without financial flight expenses caught Facebook users' attention. Despite the fact that such felony constantly recurs every year, the number of deceived netizens astonishes.

Approximately at the same time last year, British Airlines[2] supposedly offered such present. In exchange for the gift, users had only to share the corrupted imitated web page of the original one. The post also contained style and grammar mistakes which suggested the origin of the scam.

Same principle, new ways of trickery

Speaking of this year‘s scam, the crooks exploited the names of AirAsia, Emirates, Delta Airlines to counterfeit the posts. In order for users to claim the reward, they only needed to answer three questions: whether they had ever used the airlines, were they satisfied and share their impression about the flight.

After submitting the answers, clicking “Like” button is the final step. However, here is where the troubles appear.[3] Then, they will be redirected to an alternative domain which demands mobile phone number. Such action might have seemed quite legitimate taking into account that such information is often required by companies.

Other users reported getting redirected to websites full of pop-up alerts. Mobile users encountered a bigger danger as the may not have been asked for additional confirmation. Alternatively, the scam involved offering corrupted browser add-ons which did not only spy on users’ online activities but engaged in stealing personal data.

Why is Facebook unable to stop these scams?

Such type of felony appears every year, so you might be wondering why Facebook does not take necessary measures to counterattack them. The answer is simple: scams keep diversifying. Another key factor depends entirely on users. Since it not entirely uncommon for various companies to offer their products or services only in exchange for clicking “Like” or “Share,” netizens easily fall for the scam. Bearing in mind that nothing is given for free might encourage you next time to think twice before sharing a post.

About the author
Julie Splinters
Julie Splinters - Anti-malware specialist

Julie Splinters is the News Editor of 2-spyware. Her bachelor was English Philology.

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