In January of 2020, a post started making the rounds on Facebook that looked like this:
The post stated: “ALDI will reward someone out of every share and comment by 11pm Sunday to win a year of free groceries! — ALDI Team”
This post is false. Aldi is not giving away a year of free groceries.
Several things about the post are problematic, cluing us in that it is a scam.
- It is not on Aldi’s official Facebook page and is not on any of Aldi’s other social media platforms, and it is not on Aldi’s website. Instead, it was posted by a page impersonating Aldi.
- It does not offer important details such as a specific date. It does not say what Sunday the deadline falls on, and it does not say what time zone the 11 p.m. deadline is located in.
- It sounds too good to be true. As the fact-checking website Snopes points out, the post in question follows the script of similar like-farming scams that draw readers in with a big promise, followed by a request to like, comment, and share the post. The Better Business Bureau states: “Use your good judgement. If a post says you can win something that sounds too good to be true, it probably is.”
The Facebook post in question is a scheme known as like farming, in which, according to the Better Business Bureau, scammers write posts designed to catch your attention and get many likes, comments, and shares. The posts often appeal to emotions (sick children, homeless animals, politics, a chance to win something big, etc.). As a post gets liked and shared, it gets seen by more people on Facebook and appears in more people’s newsfeeds. After a post gains a large audience, scammers often edit the post, adding something malicious such as a link to a website that downloads malware to your device. They may also strip the Facebook page’s original content and change its focus, using it to try to sell spammy products, or they might resell the page on the black market where buyers can spam you.
Snopes stated it has reached out to Aldi and will update if they receive more information about the false Facebook post.