A large number of these accounts have been terminated for marketing products with unsubstantiated claims, many revolving around “get-rich-quick” schemes, “business transformational courses”, and dubious memberships costing tens of thousands of dollars.
Some of these online gurus even go as far as to entice participants to become “affiliates” of their schemes, creating multiple websites and advertising accounts to circumvent Facebook’s clampdown.
Online Guru scams are targeting senior citizens
While most advertisements are neither malicious or fraudulent, the public has been advised to conduct proper due diligence prior to participating in any of such online programmes.
Senior citizens are also advised to be extra cautious, as many fraudulent advertisers have been found to target individuals above the age of 50.
Users are also encouraged to use Facebook’s reporting tools in the event they spot malicious advertisements, allowing Facebook to identify and take action against abusers of their platform (they will be banned).
Clamping down on online guru scams
Both Facebook and Google have also been investing significantly in efforts to enhance the safety of their respective platforms, deploying artificial intelligence mechanisms to detect and remove malicious content before they spread to too many people.
Earlier last week, Google also announced that advertisers will be required to verify their identities prior to being able to continue running advertisements on their platform.