Businesses have been warned to closely monitor their social media presence after a Facebook user posing as an official Just Jeans spokesperson wreaked havoc on the retailer’s Facebook page.
Just Jeans customers who posted comments to the retailer’s official Facebook page received offensive responses from an account registered as 'Just Jeans' and containing the store's logo as its profile image.
The scam continued over a 12-hour period and a number of customers unwittingly engaged in ongoing discussions with the fake Just Jeans account on the official page, which has over 18,000 “likes”.
One customer was told their name had been blacklisted at stores around Australia, while another was told their comment was “so last year”.
"How rude!!," one customer wrote. "No one seems to be able to do [their] job properly! Just jeans, appalling!"
Just Jeans acted on Tuesday morning, deleting the comments from the hoax account and posting Facebook messages assuring customers the retailer was investigating the hoax.
“It has come to our attention that unauthorised posts are being made by someone purporting to be from Just Jeans,” an authorised spokesperson posted.
“We are investigating these posts as a matter of priority. We’re sorry for any upset that has been caused, we are doing everything we can to address the matter as soon as possible.”
SmartCompany contacted Georgia Chewing, spokesperson for the Just Group for comment, however, she was unavailable prior to publication.
She told Fairfax earlier the Just Jeans page was on average monitored on a daily basis and said the retailer had never encountered a hoax user before.
"We have blocked the individual from using our site," Chewing said.
Michael Simonetti, founder and managing director of digital agency AndMine, told SmartCompany businesses need to keep a close eye on any social media they use.
“It’s a hard one for businesses to monitor, especially overnight, but it is their responsibility,” he says.
“Our clients are very aware that anything that goes up on public pages is part of their advertising. Facebook is a public advertising space so it is the business’s responsibility to monitor it and make sure any comments, whether they have generated it or it is user generated, is appropriate for the brand.”
Simonetti says businesses need to be far more reactive than the 12-hour period it took Just Jeans to respond to the hoax.
This does not mean businesses need to be constantly checking social media but, instead, Simonetti recommends setting up automatic blocks for certain key words by using free settings available on Facebook.
“If things are posted in a particular way or using certain words you can use the Facebook functionality to automatically hide the posts,” he says.
“For example, we worked with Ojay clothing and it got trolled over using fur in their garments, so we created a blacklist of words associated with fur and any words that were particularly aggressive, which saves monitoring overnight.”