The Russian Millionaire that Fooled Instagram

Boris Bork had everything a man can want. Expensive travels, several helicopters, luxurious cars and several millions in his bank account. His Instagram account was followed by nearly 20K people (now the figure is higher than that) and he even got to appear on a Russian band’s musical video. Life had been good to him, and this Russian millionaire liked showing his life on Instagram, like many other millionaires do. However, Bork’s story was different – @borisbork wan’t about a millionaire, but about a normal retired man.

Bork, a living millionaire  – or not?
Bork, a living millionaire – or not?

Bork was the result of an experiment conducted by two friend whose aim was to prove that no much money was needed to create an Internet sensation. Roman Zaripov, a 23-year-old marketing consultant, got the idea after reading an article about how much it would cost to create a social-media star. According to him, the text said that it could go up to six or seven figures. He immediately thought that it had to be much cheaper, and starting searching through the Russian network VKontakte until he found a middle-aged man with “fresh looks” that could pass as a ficticious millionaire.

That’s how Boris Kudryashov, a retired man from Moscow, became Boris Bork, a millionaire. They spent several weekends taking pictures and posting them onto Instagram until they made Kudryashov – whose pension adds up to $195 per month – the millionaire he was. Bork got numerous DMs on Instagram, some thirty a day, asking him to promote clothing brands or to accept gifts in exchange for advertising.

Finally, everything was unveiled on a long Facebook post. He was amazed at how having spent some $800 in two months, you can make someone seem a millionaire to tens of thousands of people. He was shocked by how easy it is to fool people – nobody checks the facts they’re sown on social media.


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