Neptune Navigate Blog

Tips for online safety, security, and responsible digital citizenship for parents, kids, and families.

The Blue Badge… Is It Worth The Risk?

September 16, 2021

https://www.cnet.com/tech/services-and-software/beware-verification-scams-on-instagram-facebook-and-twitter-red-flags-going-off/

That little blue box with the white check mark…such a small thing that apparently carries so much weight in the circles of social media. Now I admit, I’m not much of an expert on becoming “verified”  or even why it really matters.  But to many social media influencers, it’s a pretty important badge of honor. For some, it’s so important they don’t even think twice before giving out their information in order to get that little badge.  And scammers like Enver Ceylan are ready and waiting to help them out.  Ceylan’s first step is to  provide fake verification forms for the user to complete.  Once the form has been submitted, he is then able to take over their accounts.  It doesn’t take long for the victim to realize he/she has been scammed.  Because this particular hacker provides video and photos as proof of his ability to get accounts verified, influencers either fail to notice or choose to ignore any red flags that might occur, and so they quickly get sucked into the deception.  Unfortunately, Enver Ceylan is not the only criminal trying to steal personal information from influencers on the internet.  Many criminals use Instagram accounts claiming to be social media consultants and promise verification for a specified amount of money.  However, an employee from Facebook — owner of Instagram, states that it is against the social network’s rules to sell or buy verification.  Besides the form required for verification, authorities say that people should always check out the person making the false claims.  Do some reverse image searches on their pictures and posts to see where those originated.  Check out their accounts.  Do they appear to be fake?  Does the person use stock photos on their site? Take some time to do some research before ever handing out any personal information.  If that little blue badge is really that important to you, it’s definitely worth the time and effort of doing your due diligence first.  And THAT is a verifiable statement. 

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