Fake GTBank Page Replying Lady Among Many Parody & Scam Accounts on Twitter: 6 Ways to Spot Them

Fake GTBank Page Replying Lady Among Many Parody & Scam Accounts on Twitter: 6 Ways to Spot Them

The use of parody accounts is a popular practice on social media, especially on Twitter. This happens when an account is created to represent what they are not. A definition by Twitter accurately explains it below:

“...a parody, commentary, or fan account is an account that depicts another person, group, or organisation in their profile to discuss, satirise, or share information about that entity.”

While Twitter has spelt out the rules for parody accounts, many accounts have gone against it to mislead many into consuming fake information.

What does Twitter say about the use of parody accounts?

Twitter clearly stated in its guideline that a parody account must, in its account name and bio, reflect what it is. On both the account name and bio, the use of words like “fake,” “fan,” and “commentary,” must be shown. It reads:

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“The bio should clearly state that the account is not affiliated with the subject portrayed in the profile. Non-affiliation can be indicated by incorporating words such as, but not limited to, ‘parody,’ ‘fake,’ ‘fan,’ or ‘commentary’.”

A good example of how a parody should operate is in the screenshot below. The parody’s account name and bio showed it was a fan account.

PAY ATTENTION: Share your outstanding story with our editors! Please reach us through info@corp.legit.ng!

Parody account and its consequences.
GRV's fan account is different from the real account. Photo source: @GRVLagosFan
Source: Twitter

How not to be a parody account

Although the rules are well stated, some accounts have flouted them outright with ill intentions to mislead people or, in dire cases, fleece them of their money.

There have been instances where parodies tried hard to hide what they were to drive conversations towards their agenda or assert themselves as the actual entity.

A parody replied to Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s post

A fascinating example of that happened on Tuesday, March 14, when an account impersonating a professor of history, Saheed Aderinto, made a tweet in response to Nigerian president-elect Bola Tinubu congratulating him on the prestigious Dan David $300,000 history prize he won.

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The account claiming to be Professor Aderinto quoted a tweet from Tinubu congratulating the professor on the history prize award. The account’s response was:

“Thanks anyway for the recognition, I hope you restore Our stolen Mandate.”
Parody account interacting with Tinubu
A parody account acted like a professor of history. Photo source: @Aderinto
Source: Twitter

Dubawa did a fact-check on the parody acount. Read the full report here.

A fake account impersonating Arise TV

An account (Arise Tv Global) impersonating Nigeria media house, Arise TV, has been doing so since Oct. 2022, when it was opened. The fake account described itself as a media organisation without stating that it satirised the real Arise TV. While a part of the real account’s profile reads: “Global News and Entertainment. Every Culture. Every Angle,” the fake account played on that to add “Global” to its account name and say it is “Broadcasting Original News The Way it comes.”

See the screenshots below:

Fake account masquerading as Arise TV
The fake account has been opened since 2002. Photo source: @OurNigeriaToday; @Arisetv
Source: Twitter

Fake accounts impersonating banks

This set of accounts is the most dangerous because they are targeted to mislead people into revealing details that could compromise their bank accounts. There is a host of them on Twitter. Like bots, their response to people complaining about bank services is swift. They use the same logo and create similar handles to the banks they are trying to impersonate.

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Here, a GTBank fake account engaged a customer, asking them to send a DM, acting as the right organisation to resolve the dispute.

Another instance is below:

Fake account tries to scam people.
A fake account tries to scam people. Photo source: @ejadigwe, @_chat_GtB
Source: Twitter

A Chipper Cash account tried the same gimmick. Usually, these fake accounts operate simultaneously, targeting the same customer.

Fake accounts impersonating politicians

During the 2023 Nigeria general elections, DUBAWA found over 30 accounts on Twitter with no disclaimer, all impersonating Senator Yusuf Datti Baba-Ahmed, the Labour Party's vice-presidential candidate. Some of these accounts were tweeting sensitive, controversial political statements and drew lots of user comments and reactions online.

Fake account posing as Datti
Many fake accounts are posing as politicians.
Source: TikTok

In all these case outlines, one visibly noticed factor is the attention and traction of fake accounts or parody accounts with no disclaimers from online users. The reason may be the difficulty distinguishing a fake account from a real one.

Simple ways to spot parody and fake accounts

To prevent users from falling prey, DUBAWA has outlined tips for users to identify fake accounts on Twitter and social media.

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- Check the account’s bio

Using verified badges to separate parody accounts from real ones used to be a good way before badges became buyable. Now, looking at an account’s bio could tell if it is a parody. It should be in the account’s description.

- Analyse the followers’ count

Fake accounts always have fewer followers than the account they are imitating. An example is the screenshot of a scammer’s account and the real GTBank Twitter below:

Fake GTB Twitter account.
A fake Twitter account tries to scam people. Photo source: @gtbank_help
Source: TikTok

- Assess the account’s tone and language

A corporate account would be careful about the kind of tweets it puts out and how they are written. A parody account do otherwise because it has nothing to lose.


Spotting parody accounts is crucial to stopping the spread of fake news. Consider every account a parody until you have done your due diligence. The consciousness would go a long way in how one engages a post from any page, no matter how convincing the account looks or the post's virality.

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The researcher produced this media literacy article per the Dubawa 2023 Kwame KariKari Fellowship in partnership with Legit.ng to facilitate the ethos of “truth” in journalism and enhance media literacy in the country.

Source: Legit.ng

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