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'Appalling': New Facebook scam targets grieving Kiwis as vulnerable prey
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'Appalling': New Facebook scam targets grieving Kiwis as vulnerable prey

“It made me feel sick."

A concerning new scam is doing the rounds on Facebook, leaving victims like our very own More FM Breakfast Club’s Lana Searle appalled.

Lana found herself caught up in an attempted scam that preyed on her vulnerability during a time of personal loss.

Following the passing of a loved one, Lana began receiving friend requests from unfamiliar Facebook pages. These strangers had set up fake accounts using the name of the deceased, claiming to have direct access to funeral services.

Digging deeper into the bogus accounts, Lana found out on multiple occasions that these scammers were preying on people when they were at their most vulnerable, offering links to watch live-streamed funeral services online.

But here’s the catch – they asked for credit card details to secure your spot.

“Obviously, if you’re a family member you go ‘oh, this is from the funeral home so I can watch the funeral service’,” Lana explained.

Lana added that many family members going through a loss would be struck with grief, tired and overwhelmed. This may make victims of these scams have a lack of judgment.

This scam’s been targeting people all over NZ. Take Christchurch local, Denise, for example. She couldn’t afford to travel to her uncle’s funeral in Auckland, so she tried to catch it online. 

Admittedly her boss told her not to hand out her credit card details online, but Denise was adamant she needed to watch the service, which had been using her uncle's images to push their agenda.

“And yes, I got scammed big time,” she added. “It had the photo, the date everything.”

"It made me feel sick."

Thankfully in Denise’s case, the bank clicked onto it straight away and prevented the loss of any funds from her bank account.

Others may not be so lucky. To avoid falling victim to scams like this, it's important to exercise caution and stay vigilant when engaging in online transactions.