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Asia-pacific

Indian 'click farms' generate Facebook likes for cash

© AFP

Video by Julien FOUCHET , Vikram Singh

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2013-10-02

Video: Politicians in India are often accused of artificially boosting the number of their online fans thanks to "click-farms," companies that will generate fake Facebook likes for money. FRANCE 24's journalists report on the new social media scam.

Internet companies in New Delhi have found a new niche market in selling Facebook likes. In an undercover investigation, FRANCE 24 journalists have found that these “click-farms” offer over 150,000 likes in two or three months for a fixed price.

A basic package of 2,500 likes costs around 60 euros, generated by teams of low-paid workers armed with multiple fake Facebook profiles.

In India, this social media scam is a growing trend. While FRANCE 24’s journalists created a simple fake Facebook page promoting French cheese in order to approach the click-farms, the companies are also used by politicians.

Earlier this year, Rajasthan state's chief minister was severely criticized for buying 60,000 'fake' likes from Turkey.

Such scandals have hurt the credibility of online likes, even as their number globally has grown to over 4 billion a day.

Date created : 2013-10-02

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