Gaston Memorial Hospital, in Gastonia has a Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) page that posts about healthy eating, tips to prevent injuries at Zumba class, and so on. Nothing out of the ordinary, till a fake Facebook page of the same hospital was seen posting anti-Obama stuff such as denunciations called “Obamacare”. The hospital officials were shocked to see the number of “likes” going up on the fake page and they clarified the matter on their actual page. 11 days later, the fake page mysteriously vanished and no one has any idea who is responsible.
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Facebook, which prides itself for having created a real platform in the virtual world where people interact by using real names, this fakery certainly puts their credibility under the scanner. “Likes” obtained via unfair means, make advertisers shaky as they want genuine clicks from real people, so that they can convert them into sales. Fakery also spoils the authenticity of search results for the social search engine that Facebook is developing.
The problem lies in the fact that fake accounts can be easily created with the help of robots. They succeed in convincing real users to add them as friends and then spread malware. Sites have sprung up all over the place, which offer Facebook friends and likes for sale at a certain price. Fake coupons from eateries and gadget stores are forcibly introduced into the page feeds, which are a ploy to lure people to divulge personal details.
Joe Sullivan, security-in-charge at Facebook has stated that they have doubled their efforts to eliminate fake accounts and likes from their site. This question has popped into the minds of many – “How many of Facebook’s 1 billion users are fake?” Sullivan has not commented regarding that.