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Facebook Like Hijacking [BEST]

She explained how their emails and usernames tried to disguise what they were doing. In one instance, the scammers tried to spoof Facebook support by using a fake customer service email address for the user being added to the account. In another, they added a fake profile utilizing her own name, Loni Mayse, perhaps in an effort to make the duplicate look like a glitch and not an actual separate unauthorized account added to her Business Manager.

facebook like hijacking

The tens of thousands of dollars a day in Facebook ads that the scammers had access to were pushing users to an online shop called "" The site is built using ShopBase, an ecommerce platform like Shopify located in San Francisco. In fact, the majority of the ecommerce shops involved in this particular scam ring appear to be built on the ShopBase platform.

Are the scammers at least sending the unsuspecting buyers the product listed on their ecommerce site? That part is unclear. However, if they are, they are most likely selling cheap, scammy knockoff versions from dropshipping websites of the actual advertised item, a common tactic used in other Facebook scams.

"They live like a king here with the stolen money," Luan told Mashable. "They have [run the scam campaign] for like 2 years now. The trend is going up and more people are doing this. They can't be caught or go to jail because they live outside the U.S. Shutting down their profiles can't stop them."

This Facebook ad hack and scam is only getting worse, and it appears like not much is being done about it. For example, Mari Smith, one of the biggest names in the Facebook marketing world, recently shared(Opens in a new tab) that she fell victim to this very same scam too.

Nguyen Luan believes that the only thing that can stop these scams is to cut them off at the payment processor level. If the scammers can't collect their funds via platforms like PayPal or Stripe, then the majority of ecommerce scams will die out.

Marantz is a staff writer for The New Yorker and started this reporting project during the 2016 presidential campaign. He watched how extremist memes and lies were created and went viral, and he profiled the people creating the means. Marantz has also been reporting on social media platforms, like Facebook, Twitter and Reddit, that claim they're dedicated to free speech but have vulnerabilities that have allowed them to become the primary means for spreading disinformation.

And you know, one of the things he was doing, as you say, is he sort of said, OK; I want people to trust Hillary less. And I don't want to use sort of, you know, brow-furrowing concern to do that. I want to use really visceral emotions, like fear and disgust, to do that. So I'm just going to insinuate that she is really, really sick. Even though, of course, I don't have evidence that she has Parkinson's or anything, I'm just going to suggest that.

MARANTZ: Oh, for that one, it was, like, she blinked in a way that he found weird - in a video. Or you know, she had parts of her public schedule that couldn't be accounted for. And you know, I should say, the Clinton campaign was not very transparent with the press. So there were things that conspiracy-minded people could jump on because she didn't always account for where she was. So they could say - oh, that's when she went to the hospital in secret.

MARANTZ: Yeah. When I was first with him, I kind of thought - wow, I'm getting really lucky today. You know, I'm seeing him move the needle of the public discourse in such discreet ways. You know, it wasn't just Hillary being sick, it was rumors about her email; it was rumors about immigration. It was - you know, every day I was with him, multiple times a day, I would see this. And I thought - man, I must be getting really lucky. And then I was like, you know, he just does this kind of whenever he wants - morning, noon and night.

GROSS: Of course I wondered, like, how does he fund himself? Is this something he can monetize, making things go viral? But apparently, part of the how he funded himself was through his divorce 'cause his wife...

GROSS: His wife had worked at Facebook and had a lot of shares. He got some of those shares as part of the divorce settlement. And when Facebook went public, that translated to $2.6 million. But I guess he also funded himself through all the things that he sold that had nothing to do with politics, like the vitamin supplements and dieting things and...

So kind of the height of this was on inauguration weekend. The people who as - the way they put it is, we memed Trump into the White House. So they like to use meme as a verb, which is, like, a pretty good description of what they do. And so the people who memed Trump into the White House said, we are going to proudly wear this label of deplorable. We're going to have an inauguration ball called the DeploraBall, and we're going to celebrate the fact that, you know, the likes of Hillary thought we were so deplorable and yet we still beat her.

MARANTZ: Yeah. So as with a lot of fringe things, they are extremely, frankly anti-Semitic, racist. The aesthetic is kind of like drive-time radio, shock jock from the '90s kind of thing. They were big fans of The Jerky Boys and "Opie and Anthony." So it was kind of that aesthetic mixed with just shockingly, horrifyingly racist stuff.

So as for how influential it is, on the one hand, you know, you don't hear a lot of people walking around just openly talking like that, but on the other hand - because all these things are interconnected and because the entire, you know, circulatory system of American media is sort of one big thing now - you do sometimes see memes that they invented permeating across the entire system. So you know, they - for instance, they invented the meme of putting three parentheses around the names of Jewish people. That was then something you saw everywhere. So a lot of...

And so the first order of business to them was to point out where all the Jews were so that innocent white people could know and could rise up against them. So a lot of people who were playing around with this meme on Twitter would not have known its true origins, and in a sense, that's how they like it. You know, they want to stay in the shadows.

MARANTZ: Often, yeah. They became very close allies, and Richard Spencer would often go on "The Daily Shoa." And what Enoch would do - he called them narratives. So he would sort of set the narratives. So Enoch and his co-hosts would sort of say, OK, well, I think a good narrative for this moment would be to do X, Y or Z. So for instance, they were very interested in getting the word cuck-servative (ph) to permeate through the national discourse. Now, that's such a gross word that I almost can't really define it on public radio. But in a way, that's kind of the point, right? Their goal would be to get people like me saying that word in polite company.

The way that starts is by kibitzing on their podcast and saying, OK, how can we do this? And who do we go after on Twitter? What emotions do we create in that person to get them to almost become a host for this mental virus that can then be propagated through the rest of society? So yeah, definitely, people like Richard Spencer, people like Jason Kessler who organized the Charlottesville rally - all these people would kind of gather in these small rooms where it was just the inner circle of the hardcore who were listening, and then from there, it would kind of permeate in multiple directions.

GROSS: This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross. Let's get back to my interview with Andrew Marantz, author of the new book "Antisocial: Online Extremists, Techno-Utopians, And The Hijacking Of The American Conversation." He spent the past three years, starting with the 2016 presidential campaign, embedding with online extremists, profiling them, and watching them create viral memes. He's also written about social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Reddit and what they have and have not done to prevent their platforms from being used to spread lies, smears and hate speech. When we left off, we were talking about Mike Enoch, who Marantz describes as a white supremacist. Enoch founded the blog The Right Stuff and the podcast "The Daily Shoah." The title is a play on "The Daily Show" and the Shoah, a Hebrew word for the Holocaust.

And then it was essentially like a Greek tragedy for him. Like, he was a really isolated person, and his wife was really the only person who understood him in the world. And in a way, he had found the one thing that could risk driving them apart. And in a sense, it just felt like a random tragedy to him. But as I learned more about his story, it seemed fitting because he was just one of these people - and there are many of them in the book - who was so addicted to contrarianism that they will find a way to be contrary to anything in their lives, even at the deepest levels.

MARANTZ: The Daily - exactly, yeah. Not only is it implausible, but I have some reporting that pretty clearly shows that that's not true. And you know, it just makes you wonder - like, how could a Jewish woman have sat there and stayed married to this guy? And just one of the things I found again and again and again is that people are just weirder than we could possibly imagine. They have more flexibility. They have maybe more kind of emptiness at the core of their political ideology than we think.

It's made me, really, honestly change the way I think about politics. You know, when we talk about people's political convictions and say - some voters like free trade, and others like, you know, protectionism - it - just, like, a lot of people are just way more open to vast, strange conversion on all kinds of things than we ever think possible.

MARANTZ: Because - well, for one, she's just the most anti-war candidate. And some of them are almost single-issue voters in that way. But others, they really stand so far outside the political system that they know that they're not going to get most of what they want from any particular candidate. So they're - you know, like all sort of radical politics, it's a question of getting what you can from the mainstream system. 350c69d7ab


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