Portrait(s) of a Spammer

By: Viveka Wednesday August 1, 2012 comments Tags: LinkedIn Spam, LinkedIn Spammers

What to look for in the newest rash of LinkedIn Spammers

Are all HR Directors so attractive?

I recently wrote a post on Spammers on LinkedIn, and decided I needed to follow it up with the detailed specifics of what a spammers profile might look like.

I am an open networker (you might know us as LIONs) which means I will usually accept an invitation from anyone - even folks I don't know.  But even I have become significantly more cautious.  I no longer accept invitations from:


  • People without photos

  • People without anything in their professional headline section

  • People with a company name instead of their name and or

  • People with a logo instead of a picture.

Besides being suspicious, using a company name and logo goes against LinkedIn User Agreement.  And if you want to connect with me - show me who you are and what you do!

Ms. Attractive HR Director

And I certainly no longer accept invitations from - well - let's call her Ms. Attractive HR Director.  Why?  Because I recently caught on to a pattern.  See if you see it too.  (Just FYI - I received all these invitations literally within minutes of each other at about 3 AM this morning)

What in these pictures is JUST like the other?

Did you see a pattern?

  • Attractive female

  • HR Director (sometimes of a company, sometimes not)

  • Has had two HR jobs

  • Went to school from 2005 or 6 to 2008

  • Do not have customized URLs

  • Many are members of at least 20-30 groups (Avoid those groups for spam)

My heart is breaking..

My heart is breaking and its not for these sultry beauties!  Although I do feel sorry for legitimate attractive female HR directors because you might soon have a harder time connecting on Linkedin.  No - my heart is breaking because LinkedIn continues to allow these spammers - probably some icky dude in Hoboken (nothing against Hoboken - it just seemed to fit in the sentence) build fake profiles that render LinkedIn much less useful for those of us who use and love it.  I'm already seriously curtailing my connections, even if that means less visibility, and I am sure I have ignored and reported for spam some legitimate peeps by accident.

But if LinkedIn isn't going to protect itself, then we must protect our network!

Reporting Spam

When you get a suspect invitation, you can always just click on "Report Spam" as seen below

Or - if you want to make sure they are spammers, click on their profile.  If they fall into the pattern above, then click on the report button.  I choose "Misrepresentation" and then add this note: "I have been invited to connect by yet another female HR director who has had two jobs, went to school from 2005-2008 and has nothing other than groups in her profile.  I do not feel this is a legitimate profile."

If you recognize yourself in any of these images then please let me know.  We'll Skyoe or use Hookflash and I will apologize in person.  But I don't think I am going to hear from anyone.

Please share this  post with others so we can all protect ourselves and our network from these nasty skeezy icky spambots!  And make LinkedIn a safe place for attractive HR recruiters everywhere :))

Well - I'm off to delete and report these "ladies" and about 50 others from my inbox.  Just call me a social media narc!

SPAM UPDATE!  Equal Opportunity!

Well, we don't want to pick on just the lovely ladies!  The newest rash of spam seems to be coming from a rather handsome batch of studly Internet Marketing guys.  You know, they can't all Pete Cashmore!

SPAM dudes




About the Author: Viveka

Viveka is author of LinkedIn Marketing: An Hour a Day and is known internationally as the “LinkedIn Expert”.
CEO of Linked Into Business, she also hosts the biggest LinkedIn chat on Twitter.  Forbes has listed her as a top social media influencer for three years running, and she has been cited in Ragan, CNN, Forbes, Mashable, Simple Living, Bloomberg, LinkedIn's Small Business Site and "The Sophisticated Marketer's Guide to LinkedIn, The Miami Herald, Social Media Today and The Social Media Examiner!

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