November 22nd, 2009 by Stephen Jones Leave a reply »

A recent FBI report indicates that phishing scams are  more common on social networking sites through a combination of viruses, hacked accounts, and decoy messages. If you’re always on Facebook or Twitter and keep up with the latest funny videos, then think twice before clicking on the next link, image, or video that a friend forwards to you.  More important don’t do it on either your employer’s euipment or a customer’s  computer or you could be in serious  trouble.

A recent report, titled “No, Your Social Networking ‘Friend’ Isn’t Really in Trouble Overseas,” describes scam messages, which  masquerade as warnings related to service agreements or other notifications, and contain malicious code that covertly installs software on victims’ PCs, to laid thieves to steal account names and passwords.

The thieves use the accounts to distribute messages to friends of the victim, requesting large sums of money and to spread the malicious code even further.

The FBI suggests that users should adjust privacy settings to protect personal information, disable options such as photo sharing when possible, and carefully scrutinize links before deciding to click on these, regardless of their apparent source.

The FBI issued its report in conjunction with the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3), which reports that it has recorded nearly 3,200 cases of account hijacking since 2006. For more information on such scams and safeguards, check out www.ic3.gov  or www.lookstoogoodtobetrue.com

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