Pinterest is the fastest growing social media outlet ever. It only makes sense that scammers would exploit this powerful tool. The list of scams on Pinterest is steadily growing, but they all have one thing in common- brand recognition.
The use of images is extremely powerful, familiar images even more so. So, when a scammer chooses an image for their scam, it is only natural they would choose big, well-known brands like Starbucks and H&M.
The scams work something like this: A Pinner is shown a famous image and told they will get a gift card or coupon from this company if they-
- Re-Pin this image
- Enter personal data
- Enter free trials
- Install software
- Share on Facebook
All this adds up to stolen data, installed spyware, reoccurring charges to your credit card, and more faked out people.
The more these scams get shared and re-pinned, the more people get scammed. It is a win-win… for the scammers. And these things work because scammers know what they are doing. They use things like:
- Fake fave icons
- Fake countdown
- Fake ‘Pin It’ button
- Hidden ‘Pinnable’ images
- Faked friend endorsements
- Gullible people
Here is a lesson for you. If it looks too good to be true, it probably is. Do not re-pin or like anything before you check it out. And watch out for ‘free’ things and faked links. Don’t become another statistic.