Most “scams” social media influencers are associated with involve faulty or potentially dangerous weight loss products, MLM schemes, products that are of a poorer quality than advertised, etc. These are not harmless, but they are far less severe than outright swindling money directly from followers’ bank accounts using bad checks. This is the type of scam that 22-year-old Instagram and YouTube influencer Kayla Massa pulled on her followers. She managed to get 45 of her followers to trust her enough to gain access to their bank accounts with the promise of bringing them riches. The only people Kayla was interested in enriching were herself and her accomplices. She was able to glean $1.5 million from her scheme before getting arrested this February.
Marina Balmasheva, a Russian 35-year-old influencer, has shocked the world with news that she’s in a relationship with, and plans to marry her stepson after raising him when he was a young boy. She’s shared multiple photos of herself with her stepson, but the boldest was a side-by-side of herself with Vladimir when he was only 7-years-old, next to a photo of them now, as a romantic couple.