In a bid to curb the rising wave of scam on the social networking platform “Instagram”, users who usually shop on the platform have taken to an anonymously run account ‘Scamburst’ to review pages of vendors and verify their authenticity.
The account @scamburstng has been trending on various social media platforms for helping shoppers check scam pages to discover those that would likely be scam pages.
Instagram, which is regarded by communication experts as one of the biggest online shopping platforms because of its picture and video content sharing nature, have faced threats from scam pages recently.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that a business motivation group, @abujabusiness, comprising mostly female entrepreneurs in Abuja, recently raised concerns over influx of scam pages on the social media.
It stated, “there has been several complaints of an influx of scam pages on the social media platform, which has reduced customer trust on the platform.”
Some of the Instagram shoppers who spoke to NAN said that ‘Scamburst,’ has helped them distinguish between scam vendors and real ones using subtle pointers.
Other respondents praised the initiative, adding that has rejuvenated the flair for online shopping by assisting shoppers to identify scam pages.
A shopper, Zainab Abimbola told NAN that `Scamburst’ would further help in reassuring buyer’s especially those who have been swindled in the past.
“It was becoming really hard to trust Instagram vendors, but with ‘Scamburst’, I send several pages to be checked and authentic pages are selected for me,” she said.
Another shopper, Andrew Goke said that the page has saved him a lot of money as he had been scam severally by vendors on Instagram.
“I had given up on Instagram vendors, they have duped me severally. At least with a page that detects scam, it is easy to go to them for referral,” he said.
According to the handlers of ‘Scamburst’, it has put up fresh and notorious scam pages on its Instagram handle so that shoppers can be on the lookout.
They said, “Sometimes what the shoppers see on the Instagram page of the seller is not what he or she gets at the end of the day.
“So there is already an issue of trust and people are scared of Instagram shopping; vendors have been trying to combat the problem on their own but it is limited.
“By popular demand, we help shoppers review pages and certify that the vendor is sincere; this way, the Instagram shopping space is becoming safe again,” ‘Scamburst’ said.
The page handlers listed several factors to look out for when identifying scam pages including request for too much information from the customer.
They include use of too many hashtags, too-good-to-be-true deals, frequent discount offers and over flooding of stock pictures as red flags to spot in Instagram scam pages.