Be aware of Facebook "like-farming" scam

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Be aware of a social media scam called "like farming," in which criminals steal images of sick kids asking for Facebook likes in exchange for prayers.

The goal is to trick Facebook users into sharing material. Scammers eventually profit by selling the pages to marketers and driving up traffic on their pages.

Facebook says it will not donate money based on the number of likes or shares a photo receives.

Here are some things you can do to stop the hoax:

Report it to Facebook.
Don't comment on the photo or the wall where it's been posted.
Inform your friends of the scam.
Do not click "like" and do not repost.

Facebook said it continues to work to make sure high-quality content surfaces for users and low-quality posts don't. That includes trying to diminish the reach of posts that appear to be "like farming" attempts.

"People have told us they associate requests to like or share a post with lower quality content, and receiving that type of feedback helps us adjust our systems to get better at showing more high quality posts," a Facebook spokesperson said via e-mail.

"If you see a post that's low quality and seems to be focused only on gaining traffic, hover over the top-right corner of the post and click the arrow to report it."

Facebook uses "automated and manual methods to swiftly remove links and pages that violate our policies," the spokesperson said. "We're always making improvements to our detection and blocking systems to stay ahead of threats."