Schemes & Rip Offs: Social Media Scams - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Schemes & Rip Offs: Social Media Scams

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The Better Business Bureau is warning people of two new scams targeting social media.  The crooks are using its popularity and our curiosity to try and hack into our computers.
The first scam targets Twitter users.  It uses direct messages to tease potential victims with a link to an embarrassing Facebook video. Try to view the clip, and you'll download a virus.   

How the Scam Works: 

You receive a Twitter direct message that seems to be alerting you to a video of yourself posted on Facebook. Senders try to grab your attention by implying that the video is embarrassing. Variations of the message include:

  • rofl they was taping you
  • how did you not see them taping u
  • whatt are you doing in this fb vid ?
  • what on earth you're doing on this movie
  • O M G your in this
  • what on earth could you be doing in our vid

The message contains a link that appears to go to a Facebook.com address. But users who click on it are greeted with what appears to be a video player and a warning message that "An update to Youtube player is needed." The message says it will install an update to Flash Player 10.1, but the file that downloads isn't a new version of Flash. It's a virus. 

I Think I've Found a Scam. What Should I Do?   

Spammers are also taking advantage of Facebook users' desire to stay connected by sending fake alerts for "activity you may have missed on Facebook."  Just don't click the link! 

How the Scam Works:

You receive an email that appears to come from a Facebook user's personal email address alerting you to activity you missed on the social media site.  The sender may or may not be an actual Facebook friend.   

The scammers do an excellent job of replicating Facebook's colors, logo and language. However, hovering over the link will reveal that the real destination is a third party website ... not Facebook.com

Some recipients noted that the emails link to websites selling prescription drugs, meaning they are annoying spam rather than a scam. However, always be cautious about clicking on links in fake emails because the destination website may download malware to scan for banking and other sensitive information on your computer.

For More Information:

For tips on how you can avoid phishing scams and prevent your account from being hacked, see Twitter's "Safe Tweeting" help page. 

See Facebook's scam webpage for more information about the site's most common frauds.

To find scams in your area, check BBB's scam directory

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