Imagine that you are a famous NGO that collects secondhand clothes for homeless people and you find out that another page—not yours—pretending to be you, with the same name and profile picture, and publishes posts encouraging people to donate money to some account.
Oops…that’s not good. At all.
If your brand has any sort of following, it’s possible that you’ll find many accounts, community pages and fan pages operating with your name—even though they have no affiliation. You probably know by now that copycats are an unfortunate byproduct of successfully developing a brand. The problem comes when there are too many of these fake accounts with too many followers believing them to actually be voices for your brand; when they publish content, it could directly damage your company image.
Though it may not be as extreme as the NGO example, if you find your company in a similar situation, it’s probably best to act now and report the fake account.
First things first, you would need to fill out this online form on Facebook.
Follow the instructions of the form and you’ll be able to send a report. If “found guilty,” the page(s) will be removed from Facebook within 1-2 weeks.
Once you have removed the pages pretending to be you, you should try to ask Facebook to verify your account (though this feature is not available in all regions yet).
You will always be asked to present proof that your trademark or copyright has been infringed. And of course, it’s not recommendable to go on a witch-hunt for competitors or give fake information in the report, because Facebook might just punish you for that!
Getting rid of copyright and trademark infringement is super important for your brand’s image—be diligent to make sure imposters aren’t establishing your voice for you!