GREENFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Greenfield Deputy Police Chief William Gordon said the department is getting reports of a missing child in the area, but the Facebook posts originating the reports are fake.
Gordon said the department investigated the posts and is confident that it is a phishing post, and once the post is shared the account owner will edit the post to a phishing website.
“We have been provided with similar posts with pretty much the exact same wording featuring other missing persons all posted by a poster with the same first name,” “said Gordon.
The latest post of this nature features a boy named Ryan Cannon, who is said to have left for school Monday morning and never returned. The post gives a description of Cannon and asks for help locating him.
The department said on their social media attempts to contact the alleged mother failed when she did not respond to their messages. The mother posted from another account and joined the group Everything Greenfield. The department said this behavior is typical for a fake or harassing account.
Gordon said he believes this is a typical and common method designed to click bait users. However, a real child’s photo is being used to trick people and Gordon and the Greenfield Police are asking people not to share that picture of the child.
“They’ll make a post like this, that gets shared by many people. At some point, hours after it was originally posted and shared dozens of times, they’ll edit the post to sell something or with a link that takes you to a phishing (website) or could upload a virus,” said Gordon. “Always be aware of these posts and who is posting.”
The social media post was changed to a link, pictured above, after the post was shared over 60 times and alarmed the Greenfield community.
“At the end of the day, don’t believe everything you read on Facebook,” said Gordon.