How Copied Social Media Profiles Gave Birth To A New Form of Identity
Devumi, a social media marketing company, has been exposed as a prominent figure in the “fake followers” scandal. As a result, over a million Twitter accounts have vanished, costing well-known users their once big online audience. But don’t let that fool you, social media platforms have yet to get to the bottom of this.
So people are losing followers… big whoop! The real victims here are the people whose personal information has been stolen.
Celebrities, athletes, pundits, and politicians have millions of fake followers.
With promises like, “Devumi boosts your social media campaigns to success”, Devumi has over 200,000 customers. But, the shady company could be partly responsible for a new form of fraud referred to as ‘social media identity theft‘.
The New York Times Describes Devumi’s business practices as “a vast trade in fake followers” that partake in “fraudulent engagement”. In fact, law officials are investigating websites like Devumi that make a profit off of selling automated bot-generated accounts on Twitter and other sites, taking the form of slightly modified, copied profiles.
At least 55,000 fake accounts use the names, profile pictures, hometowns and other personal details of real Twitter users, including minors, according to a Times data analysis.
A victim of social media identity theft not only has their privacy infringed but their digital identity could be directly affected. Often times, these bots are bought to promote a brand, a product, or a person. What the fake profile shares isn’t always positive and is never under your control. Sometimes the content can be as graphic as pornography. This is one example of how copied profiles can ruin a person’s social media image which, in turn, has dire consequences on the person’s real (offline) life. What’s worse is that one may never even know if there’s a copied profile of them out there. We hope not, but how can we be sure?
While many fraudulent accounts have been taken down, there are still tens of millions lingering online. Check yourself out with Spyfly.
SpyFly was founded with the mission of making it safe and easy for people to find and learn the truth about each other online. By providing our members fast, easy and affordable access to public records, members can quickly make informed decisions about individuals they interact with. SpyFly provides searches for active warrants, driving records, arrest records, sexual predators and offenders, and several other public record information searches all in one place to keep you, your family, co-workers, and loved ones safe.