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When Tom Sheerin got a Facebook message from someone claiming to be an employee of the platform and saying that he had won a brand new Jeep and $1.2 million, he decided to play along. Two hours of hilarity ensued.
The message came on Sunday from a Facebook user named Michael Austin who claimed to be passing a message along for Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg. He told Sheerin that 10 lucky Facebook users had been picked by way of random selection to receive prize money totaling 1.2 million dollars as well as a Jeep that would be distributed by “Federal State Government.”
As if the exchange didn’t start out suspicious enough, Austin prompted Sheerin to follow rules and regulations to be granted his prize. Moments later, he sent a picture of the supposed cash and a clearly botched mockup of an assurance letter from Facebook.
The scammer’s next move was to propose a delivery fee of $500 in order for his winnings to be privately delivered. Sheerin’s reluctance to comply to the demands led to the two squandering on about Clarence the sick delivery man, Sheerin’s old friend Biff from school, and a juvenile drawing of a horse.
Needless to say, Sheerin’s quick wits helped him ultimately evade the scam. The back and forth game of “troll or be trolled” lasted for two hours, according to Metro.
Onaje McDowelle is an editorial intern for the Daily Dot. He is studying journalism and African and African Diaspora Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. His work has appeared in Austin Monthly magazine, GoodMusicAllDay, and Orange magazine.