Facebook works hard to prevent scams and promote user safety. But, as with any major platform, scammers find new ways to exploit users. The latest social media scam threatens to deactivate user accounts if they don’t provide personal information to ‘verify’ their account.
Here’s everything you need to know to spot the ‘Violations Detected On Your Page’ scam and protect your account.
What is the “Violations Detected On Your Page” Scam?
The scam begins with an unsolicited Facebook message that claims your page has been reported for terms of service violations. It appears to come directly from Facebook and warns that your account will be permanently disabled if you don’t immediately confirm your identity. This scam message is designed to cause urgency and panic, hoping users will react impulsively.
A link is provided claiming it leads to Facebook’s ‘Account Confirmation’ page. Unfortunately, the URL actually takes you to a convincing phishing site attempting to compromise accounts and steal personal information. Scammers use your login credentials for identity theft, account compromise, and malware distribution.
The first step to protect yourself and others is to understand exactly how this scam operates.
How It Works
There are usually five stages in this scam:
1. An alarming message
You receive an unsolicited Facebook message in your inbox designed to instill fear of losing your account. The ominous language pressures users to act quickly.
Here is an example of the message you might receive:
Violations detected on your page
We are constantly updating our Meta Privacy and Terms of Service. We have temporarily suspended your page because it has been reported that you violated our terms and conditions of service.
If you believe this is an error in our system, please verify your account at the link below.
To verify your account, click on the following link: (link)
Confirm your account within the next 24 hours, otherwise, your Page may be permanently disabled.
Meta Security Team
2. A fraudulent link
While the message includes an official-looking link, the URL actually takes you to a fake phishing site operated by scammers.
3. A phony confirmation page
To avoid losing your account or having it disabled, log in and ‘Confirm Your Account.’ While the page appears legitimate with Facebook’s branding and web address, any information you enter is stolen by scammers.
4. Your account is compromised
Once you submit your username and password, criminals immediately have full access to your account. With this information, they can exploit your identity, access personal data, message your friends, and post ads or content. Stolen accounts are also sold on dark web marketplaces.
5. It’s challenging to reclaim your account
Scammers often lock out the original owner by changing the contact email and enabling two-factor authentication, so recovering your account is difficult. Reclaiming access requires a long and complicated process.
How You Know It’s a Scam
The scam messages and phishing sites may closely resemble Facebook’s branding, but if you look closely, you’ll notice subtle indicators that make them fake.
1. Greeting is generic
Scam messages use generic greetings like ‘Dear user,’ but legitimate Facebook communication uses your name or username.
2. Typos and incorrect grammar
Typos and spelling/grammar errors are a huge red flag that the message is a scam. Communication from Facebook is professional and error-free.
3. Unreasonable threats and urgency
Scammers use unreasonable threats and create urgency that compels you to act quickly without thinking things through. Facebook policy violations result in warnings and temporary restrictions – not immediate account disabling.
4. Personal information requests
Facebook will never ask for your password through an unsolicited message. Any request for login credentials or personal information is another red flag.
5. Fake links
Before clicking on a link, look closely at the embedded URL for extra words or misspellings that indicate a fake link. If you’re unsure, contact Facebook directly through their official help center.
What to Do if You’re a Victim of This Scam
If you suspect your Facebook account has been hacked by the ‘Violations Detected On Your Page’ scam or any other phishing attack, take these steps immediately:
- Log out of all active sessions – This will kick the scammers out of your account and prevent additional misuse.
- Change your password – Choose a new password that scammers can’t easily guess, preferably one you haven’t used anywhere else.
- Enable two-factor authentication – Adding another layer of verification by requiring an access code will prevent future hacks.
- Remove connected apps – Check and remove any suspicious or unknown third-party services linked to your account.
- Review recent posts and messages – Look over your feed and messages for any inappropriate or virus-infected content sent from your account while it was compromised. Report any suspicious posts.
- Submit your ID to Facebook – You’ll need to prove you’re the rightful account owner providing your ID to Facebook. Recovering access will take time.
- Warn your contacts – Alert your contacts of the hack and do not accept any messages that appear to come from your account until you resolve the issue.
- Perform an antivirus scan – If you suspect your device is infected with malware, run an antivirus scan.
Read More: Is Two-Factor Authentication Necessary for Your Business Social Accounts?
How to Avoid This Scam
Staying informed and diligent makes it harder to target you for this scam. Take these proactive steps to keep your account secure:
- Enable login verifications – To block unauthorized access, require an additional code with each login attempt.
- Use complex passwords – Each of your online accounts needs a unique password that’s difficult to break.
- Ignore unsolicited messages – Don’t open random messages from unknown users and never click on included links.
- Report suspicious messages – If you receive an unusual message from Facebook, report it through the app.
- Review privacy settings – Decrease risks by restricting account sharing and visibility.
Unfortunately, phishing scams are a reality these days. The ‘Violations Detected On Your Page’ scam is currently one of the most pervasive. By understanding how the scam works and exercising caution, you can avoid being its next victim.
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