Bank of America was recently made the target of a digital prank in the form of a fake Google+ page.
Google only recently unveiled Google+ pages for businesses. And it seems some Internet jokesters were already ready to make their disgruntled attitudes against the bank publicly known.
The bogus Bank of America page touted the byline "we took your bailout money and your mortgage rates are going up." The introductory paragraph under the "about" tab also went on to say that the bank is "committed to making as much money as possible from usury, coercion, bribery, insider trading, extortion, and debit card fees as possible."
In another post, the "company" writes: "Living under a tarp? I am too. My TARP is much bigger, however, and billions of dollars more expensive."
This isn't exactly the best kind of branding strategy for a consumer-facing financial entity.
It appears the page went up on November 8, and wasn't taken down for a few days, according to Sophos.
Google's new social network might need a few tweaks when it comes to verifying company pages.
After all, while the Bank of America page is relatively humorous it probably not the best for the company's reputation. And perhaps Google should have anticipated such abuse. People creating fake pages and websites aren't exactly a new phenomenon. So-called "brandjacking" has existed for quite a while on Twitter, until it created its "verified accounts" procedure in 2009.
Though maybe now the Internet company will start to roll out stricter implementation procedures to ward off more fake Google+ pages. Currently, the Bank of America page is back to being "official," with a verification insignia on its profile.
Bank Of America Just Had The Ultimate Social Media Fail (Business Insider)
Google+ + Law Firm Marketing = Increased Firm Income? (FindLaw's Strategist)
Should Your Business Get a Google+ Page? (FindLaw's Free Enterprise)