PHILADELPHIA (CBS)–Scam artists go to great lengths to fool people, posing as everything from government officials to your cell phone provider. They’re also using social media to act like old friends.
It started as a Facebook friend request from a high school buddy. Then Michael Hansen says his friend asked if he collected his stimulus money yet, some $70,000.
He claimed he saw Michael’s name on a list.
The friend said he got money too.
“And so I went oh really,” said Hansen.
Michael texted the number his friend suggested, learning he would get his $70,000 government check if he sent $850 for the delivery charge.
“That was a red flag,” Hansen said.
About the same time his friend messaged him saying he too had sent that money.
Then, Michael’s phone rang and a caller, claiming to be from Facebook, said he could help Michael, all he needed was remote access to his computer.
Realizing that could lead to his computer getting hacked, or malware being installed Michael said “No way.”
The Better Business Bureau says most of us know by now scammers are cloning Facebook pages, stealing people’s photos and then targeting that person’s Facebook family and friends list.
It’s forcing con artists to get more creative hitting targets from several directions.
Michael knows this and is glad he didn’t fall for the scam.
To avoid being contacted by one of these scammers, experts suggest changing your security settings on Facebook so strangers can’t see your photos, profile or friends list.