- An Associated Press examination found a growing worldwide market for fake social media clicks from offshore "click farms."
- Businesses, celebrities and even the U.S. State Department have paid for Facebook likes, Twitter followers and YouTube views in order to inflate social media numbers.
- The sale of fake Twitter followers may have brought in as much as $360 million in 2013, while false Facebook likes are said to bring in around $200 million a year.
As long as value is still derived from having a large social media following, operations like the click farms will persist. Buyers beware, however, because Google, YouTube and Facebook all have practices in place to weed out fake activity. Brands that purchased fake social media clicks will likely pay the real price in the end when their accounts are deleted.