Facebook users are being warned over a scam offering fake meal vouchers for Wetherspoon pubs across the UK.

The pub chain closed down all of its social media accounts in 2018 but that hasn’t stopped fraudsters posing as the budget pub chain, consumer watchdog Which? has warned.

Posts are claiming that users who comment and get a response from the account will receive free Wetherspoon meal vouchers but the pages are in fact set up by scammers targeting social media users.

The posts read ‘Congratulations for those of you who have received comments from us, you have the opportunity to win them’. You are then asked to like and share the post with your friends.
The pages set up by scammers don’t have large followings however concerns are being raise over the potential to reach a large audience.

According to Which? searches for ‘Wetherspoons Facebook scam’ have risen by 800% on Google in the past week.

While it is unclear what happens if you fall victim to the scam, users are asked to ‘like’ and ‘share’ to enter a competition by following a link to the competition website, where users are asked to enter their details to claim their prize.

Wetherspoon issue statement on Facebook scams

Wetherspoon’s website states that: “Wetherspoon does not use any social media. Any promotions on social media which appear to be from Wetherspoon are, therefore, unofficial and fake – so please do not participate or share your details with such adverts. 

“We will continue to report fake pages and do apologise for any inconvenience caused by these unassociated spam accounts.”

How to spot a Facebook scam

As well as reporting scams to Action Fraud you can help protect other by using the Which? scam sharer tool.

Which has put together a list of things to look out for when you suspect a scam.

  • Is the deal ‘too good to be true’? – If the deal or competition looks too good to be true, it probably is. A quick Google search will tell you if the legitimate company is promoting the giveaway.
  • Check the URL – If you’ve followed a link, does the URL look suspicious? If it does, leave the site.
  • Check your social timeline – Is there a high number of people posting or sharing the same thing? They may have been scammed.
  • Check the branding – scammers are becoming more and more sophisticated but there might be giveaways such as inconsistencies in the branding that could give them away.
  • Send a message – if someone you know has posted or shared something suspicious, ask them. Send them a message to make sure – it may have been intentional.
  • Contact the company directly – Reach out to the company on social media, via email or over the phone to check whether the competition or giveaway is real.