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Millions of Facebook users warned over three ‘red alerts’ – ignoring them could cost you

THERE are three types of Facebook message you absolutely must ignore.

Cyber-experts have warned over a triad of dangerous posts and private DMs that could put you in danger.


Most Facebook posts are harmless – but some are extremely dangerousCredit: Facebook

Hackers and crooks increasingly turn to Facebook to get cash out of innocent victims.

Billions of people use the app, so it’s a prime target for cyberattacks and online cons.

Now cyber-expert Jamie Akhtar has revealed three worrying scams that should put you on “red alert”.

Ignore the advice and you could end up out of pocket.

Scam #1 – the “disabled account” phish

“At present, a very popular scam is to send Facebook users an email link to reset their Facebook account, claiming it has been disabled for security purposes,” said Jamie, the CEO of CyberSmart, speaking to The Sun.

“Once the cybercriminals have your login credentials, they’re free to access your account, steal any personal details you have there and wreak havoc.”

To avoid the scam, double-check the communication.

Is it written in a strange way, and is it from an official Facebook email address?

And is the reset link taking you to a legitimate Facebook page?

“Usually, simply taking a moment to check these things can help you spot a fake pretty easily,” Jamie told us.

“On top of this, use multi-factor authentication such as a text message code when you log in, this will make it much more difficult for any hacker to gain access to your account.”

Scam #2 – the romance scam

“While this kind of attack takes a lot more dedication and patience on the bad guys’ part, it’s arguably much more effective and devastating when done well,” said Jamie, describing the Tinder Swindler style con.

“Usually, these scams will start with a random user contacting the victim and seeking to gain their trust through flattery or disarming honesty.

“This can continue for weeks or months until the cybercriminal feels they have the victim’s trust.

“However, they’ll almost always ask for money in the end and quickly disappear once they have it.”

To avoid the scam, do checks on the person that’s contacting you.

See if you have any mutual friends, and question whether their behaviour is consistent with a real person.

Ask yourself if they’re putting pressure on you or trying to rush things along.

“In these situations, it’s important to trust your gut. If things feel slightly odd, they probably are,” Jamie warned.

“And, finally, never, ever give money to someone you don’t know online.”

Scam #3 – the bogus job offer

“Another very effective Facebook scam we’re seeing a lot is bogus job offers,” Jamie told The Sun.

“Generally, a cybercriminal will contact the victim seemingly out of the blue with an offer of an interview.

“The hacker will produce a job spec for a ‘dream job’, usually with a salary and bonus package that’s a little too good to be true.

“If the victim responds, they’ll be asked to provide a CV or the information they’d typically need to be considered for a job (name, address, email, ID, phone number etc).

“And this is all a clever criminal needs to steal your identity.”

To avoid the scam, you’ll need to do checks on the person contacting you.

Check to see if the company they say they work for actually exists.

And use other websites (like LinkedIn) to try to verify if they really work there.

Also be brutally honest with yourself: are you qualified for the job, and does the salary fit the work you’d be doing.

“Bear in mind that it isn’t uncommon for recruiters to contact candidates out of the blue on platforms like LinkedIn,” Jamie added.

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“However, it’s quite unusual for a business to do this using Facebook.”

Latest tips and tricks for social media apps

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