TikTok is one of the most rapidly developing social media apps. It has amassed a billion worldwide user base in less than a decade, with millions of its users often committing several hours to viewing and uploading short-form videos on the app.
However, with this level of achievement comes a greater number of possible hazards. Cybercriminals leverage the platform’s large user base to carry out various social engineering attacks, such as phishing and fake celebrity scams.
In this post, we will explore several TikTok scams you need to watch out for.
1. Fake Giveaways
The prospect of quick money readily misleads many individuals. If you fall for this deception, the con artist will use the promise of great cash benefits in exchange for minimal work on your side to lure you in. These scammers often claim that they will pay a random user a substantial amount if they follow the instructions.
Any offer that looks too good to be true probably is; don’t be duped. You should not anticipate getting a large sum of money or gift cards just by liking something, following someone, or posting information on your account.
Even though there are many real giveaways, it’s important to be vigilant.
2. Fake Celebrity Scams
Con artists prey on unsuspecting young people by posing as famous people. On TikTok, a fraudster may pose as a celebrity, persuading their target that they are communicating with a real celeb. It has especially become easier with the emergence of AI tools that make it easy to create convincing photos and videos. In fact, those videos may look so real that you won’t even know if the Margo Robbie texting you is real or not.
TikTok con artists may adopt this strategy for various reasons, but often, stealing money and personal information is their major objective. To seem legitimate, the scam artist will swiftly build a large following, which they will then utilize to distribute the necessary information.
Never transfer money, seek financial advice, or invest in possibilities you see floating on social media. You can also use Nuwber to easily access someone’s public information, including phone numbers, email and home addresses, work history, and relatives.
3. Romance Scams
TikTok may not be the best app to use if you want to find a partner. Dating scammers usually attempt to entice people with lovely words and lucrative promises. Those sincere in their search for a loving relationship are often easy prey.
If your emotions are getting the best of you, pay attention to what your intellect is saying. Listen to your instincts and break connections if something doesn’t seem right. Caution is always important since con artists only profess their desire for you to steal your money. If you have yet to meet this person, you should avoid sending money to them online at all costs.
4. Bot Accounts
Bots are prewritten scripts that automated accounts employ to chat with you. It may take some time to recognize that they are not looking out for your best interests because of how well they are put together. The idea is to stay in contact with you long enough to trick you into disclosing your sensitive information, such as your bank account number, or to infect your device with malware.
On TikTok, you should avoid chatting with strangers, and if you want to start a conversation with someone you don’t know, make sure this person is not a bot or scammer.
You may get phishing emails that claim to be from TikTok, promising to offer you a verified badge, increase your follower count, or support you in some other manner. If you click the link, you will be sent to a new page where you will be prompted to enter your TikTok credentials.
If you provide hackers with your login information, they can take over your account immediately. They may even terminate your account entirely if they desire. It is recommended to discard any suspicious emails rather than open them. If you have doubts that links in emails are an effort to steal your personal information, do not click on them.
6. Adult Content Scams
In this case, a con artist’s purpose is to trick you into handing over money in return for sexually explicit images or videos. These accounts will promote adult dating sites, often paying fraudsters to dupe individuals into disclosing critical information. Many of the photographs and videos on these sites are often taken from other users’ accounts.
The true purpose of the pornographic content scam is to get your credit card information. In exchange for your money, the criminals guarantee unique pornographic content. The best way to prevent this is to avoid posting personal or financial information on social media.
7. Fake Products and Services
TikTok has provided retailers with many low-cost distribution options. The issue is that sometimes the real product rarely lives up to the anticipation. The seller may discontinue using TikTok after receiving payment for their items. Or the item may be “out of stock.”
You should not put your trust in anything just because it is being sold to you at a high price. Furthermore, only shop at reliable businesses you know and trust, whose names are marked with a blue checkmark.
8. Promoted Apps Scams
Fake accounts on TikTok may be used to advertise harmful apps. These profiles will pressure you to download the app that may infect your device with malware once installed. After downloading these scam apps, you may be inundated with advertisements or infected with malware that steals your personal information.
They will often attempt to charge you for services that are freely accessible elsewhere. Before installing programs from your app store, read the reviews carefully.
TikTok makes efforts to eliminate scam-related content, yet a lot of it remains on the app. It is your responsibility to filter the information. TikTok users who are not paying attention are easy targets for cyberbullies, identity thieves, and hackers.
When consuming content online, be aware and cautious. There are scams on every prominent social media platform, including Facebook, Instagram, X, and TikTok. You should be aware of these scams and be prepared to deal with them if you come across one.