Why does Booba accuse influencers of scams?

Rapper Booba and influencer agent Magalie Berdah clash on social networks on a very specific subject: the links between influencers and online scams. Here are some of the reported scams.

Driver’s licenses put up for sale on the Internet, collections of dubious NFTs, beauty products dangerous to health, packages never delivered or even training to make investments with crypto-currencies… Since July 20, a whole group of influencers is accused on social networks of having knowingly shared scams with their subscribers. It is these practices, at best dubious, at worst large-scale scams, which are denounced by Booba.

The story mainly opposes rapper Booba and Magali Berdah, known to manage the activities of some French stars of the most popular social networks. The first criticizes the second for having, with the personalities she accompanies, shared numerous scams or attempted scams on social networks with a large number of people. Reproaches which are however accompanied by messages published by the rapper more questionable, because they encourage his fans to cyber-harass the manager otherwise, who explained that he had received insults and death threats.

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Numerama is interested here only in publications accused of being scams for several days. This is in no way to justify the cyberbullying suffered by Magali Berdah and others, but to focus on the content denounced as scams by a growing number of people on social networks following Booba’s messages – and some of which were pointed out by the rapper.

This list is not exhaustive: as Numerama regularly reminds us through articles and surveys, fraud is very numerous on the Internet. Whether it’s bogus anti-radiation products for phones, influencers who do not declare their renowned partnerships, or the resale of counterfeits, attempts of this kind and questionable practices are very common on the part of influencers. Including those we think we know – wrongly – because we follow their activities on such and such a platform.

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Some French influencers are accused of setting up scams — here they are // Source: Canva

Crypto scams and fraudulent NFTs

In addition to Magali Berdah, Booba attacks the practices of several influencers and influencers. These are personalities with hundreds of thousands of subscribers, or even a few million for those who are the most prominent. In fact, this contentious content has been seen and shared by a very large number of Internet users.

One of the most often mentioned scams is related to cryptocurrencies: this is called the ” copy trade “. The influencers involved allegedly started by promising their followers that they could earn large sums of money easily by investing in cryptocurrencies, and then invited them to download trading apps. They would then only have had to follow the directions. of experts which allegedly told them when to buy and when to sell their cryptocurrencies in order to pocket gains.

The method, which is supposed to pay off big time, mostly represents a big money loss for the victims — but not for the influencers. Some have indeed gone beyond partnerships with these trading applications, and influencers are suspected of receiving a bonus for each new person registered with a referral code and an affiliation system.

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An Instagram post from an influencer accused of copy trading scams // Source: Screenshot

In addition to the copy trade, another mentioned scam involves NFTs. The non-fungible tokens are the equivalent of a certificate of digital ownership, to acquire virtual files, and which have been a real phenomenon since the beginning of 2021. Some NFTs have even sold for record sums of several million dollars — and these quantities have provided the lust of many scammers.

There are at least two different collections of NFTs here that have been highlighted by several influencers. The two social media stars would have used the same technique: they advertised their project to their followers, claiming to be associated with stars or luxury brands, and sold the NFTs at full price. Once the tokens were sold, the influencers would have deleted all mention of the project from their social networks, closed the Discord groups, and would have left with all the sums obtained (which would have reached several million euros in all).

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One of the NFT collections denounced as fraudulent // Source: Screenshot

CPF scams and fake driving licenses

CPF (professional training account) scam attempts have become extremely common in recent months – and some influencers would not hesitate to promote this kind of trickery themselves. This is particularly the case of several people targeted by Booba: the influencers would have promoted various training courses, which would supposedly have been eligible for the CPF.

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An example of one of the driver’s license scams denounced // Source: Numerama screenshot

The scammers allegedly had some of their subscribers told that the state would cover 100% of the training costs, and even that a virtual reality headset could be offered to them. The theme of the training varies from influencer to influencer. Some would thus have indicated selling training on the metaverse, while others would have indicated offering advice on entrepreneurship.

A final theme would regularly come up in these scams: the sale of fake driving licenses. These were sold by at least two influencers, who would have had “ contacts well placed in the prefectures. These contacts would also have provided fake sick leaves, or even fake parking cards for people with disabilities.

What to do if you see a scam?

There are other scams than those mentioned here. Booba’s loud criticism of Magali Berdah and her network illustrates the need to always be careful on the Internet before buying recommendations from influencers, even if you have followed them for a long time and appreciate what they and they Police Character.

If you ever spot a scam, you can report it to the DGCCRF, the general directorate for the repression of fraud, on a dedicated website. Do not hesitate to contact us to let us know if you see any.

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Credit: Sammy Williams -- retouched photo

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