Hi folks! Sarah, Amy and I have been noticing an influx of fake Disney accounts on fb that are promising free trips to Disney for those that share the posts. The problem is, these are unfortunately, fake accounts. Now, we’re not here to tell you how annoying this is or to make you feel bad for sharing these posts. We’re here today, simply to help you become aware of how to spot these fake accounts and know if what you’re sharing is legit or not.
To start, let’s take a look at the real (and verified) Disney fanpage on facebook. The first and most obvious is The Disney Company fanpage. Currently, it has 46 million likes. That’s a great way to know if the page is real or not because almost every fake account that pops up has nowhere near that number of likes. Most that I’ve seen have around a thousand or so. I saw one that had about 4000 once and was surprised that it had that many.
The best way to decipher the real accounts from the fake ones though, is simply to take a look to the right of the page name either when you search or on the actual page itself. If there’s a white checkmark in a little blue circle, then that means that the account is verified and you can rest assured that this account is legitimate. Now, not all pages have the verified checkmark and that’s why I mentioned above the actual number of likes. If the page in question has only a few thousand, you might want to do a search and see if there isn’t another page with far more likes.
Disney does offer giveaways and spammers prey off this. Please be aware that the way they get away with this is by using the Disney name with a very slight alteration. One recent example is ” Walt Disney-World. ” Notice the difference? They’ve added a dash and a period. Inconspicuous enough for the average person to not notice, but unique enough for fb to allow the spammer to create a look-alike. You’ll also note that it does not have the little verified checkmark beside the name.
The more these types of posts are shared, the more the spammers are able to collect info on the people that share them. And let’s be clear here, I’m not here to tell you you’re wrong for sharing these posts! All of us here at the Mouse and the Monorail genuinely want to keep all of our readers not only informed, but safe from these types of internet scams. Interesting side note: while researching for this post, I was unable to actually search for these pages. I even scrolled back through some people’s timelines who I knew had shared them mistakenly and still couldn’t find the posts.
When I typed in “Walt Disney-World.” or “Disney Cruise.” the only pages that showed were the actual verified accounts. This could mean two things; either the scammers are educated enough in the inner-workings of fb to allow their fake page to not result in fan page searches, or (and I seriously believe this is the more likely option) they create the fake page for a limited time, maybe a week or so, and then delete the page altogether once they’ve collected the info they want. Luckily, I took a screenshot of this shared post when I first noticed it on my friend’s timeline and was able to check on my phone which day it was shared (because it dated the photo). I went back to that day on my friend’s timeline and it really is gone. The fact that I was unable to find the shared posts in people’s timelines definitely supports this idea.
Now that we’ve established how to spot the real from the fake, let’s take a moment to actually list some of Disney’s verified pages so you can go ahead and “like” the real pages. This way, you’ll only be seeing the real posts in your newsfeed and will able to spot a post from a friend that’s fake because your fb newsfeed will show the post twice if it was originally shared by Disney as well. At some point or another, I’m sure you’ve seen a post that fb informs you has been shared by more than one person. This would happen if you’ve liked the actual Disney page and they posted a giveaway, etc and another friend has shared that post as well. It wouldn’t happen however, if only your friend shares a fake account because you’ve liked the real Disney page to begin with. The list below contains only verified pages. As I mentioned earlier, there are pages for other Disney related things and places, (think resorts, etc) but as they’re not verified, I’m not going to include them in this list. We’ll let you all decide for yourselves on those pages. For now, here’s our list of legitimate Disney fanpages:
And there you have it! Hopefully, we’ve now established the real Disney pages from the fake ones and you can rest assured that the pages you’re following will not be scamming you. Thanks for following along and be sure to share this to help everyone become aware of the spammers out there!
Additionally, don’t forget that we have a our own giveaway (and yes, it’s very legit!) going on right now from yesterday’s post and tutorial. Be sure to check out the post for details on how you can enter. You’ve got until Friday morning at 9am to enter, so act fast!! ~M ºoº