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A Fifth of Top Brands' Social Pages are Fraudulent

Alex Spencer

A fraudulent page impersonating Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, which has nearly 45,000 followers

A fraudulent page impersonating Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, which has nearly 45,000 followers

19 per cent of social media accounts associated with the world's top 10 brands are fraudulent.

That's according to a Proofpoint study, which between April-June 2016 looked at the 4,840 social media accounts associated with these 10 brands – a list which includes Amazon, BMW, Sony and Starbucks. Each of these brands has an average 33.7m followers, spread across the breadth of social platforms including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram.

Of the 902 fraudulent accounts uncovered, the vast majority – 67 per cent  – were being used for advertising. 29 per cent were scams or offers for counterfeit products and services, while the remaining four per cent was split between malware, information phishing scams, protest and satire.

 

During Q2 2016, Proofpoint detected an average of nearly 600 new fraudulent accounts each month. Phishing scams in particular are on the rise, up 150 per cent year-on-year.

 

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