What are the Most Common Facebook Scams?
1. Phishing / Identity Theft: This type of scam hijacks your Facebook account by luring you to a webpage having a fake Facebook log-in page or malware that installs a keylogger [a malicious program capable of searching for usernames and passwords in your PC]. Upon gaining control of your account, the scammer will then contact your friends and attempt to scam them by pretending that you’re in trouble and you need some money or by posting messages and links that will compromise their accounts in turn.
2. Click/Like Jacking: Yet another Facebook scam that at the surface seems relatively harmless. This type of scam involves luring Facebook users into clicking on a link that accompanies a message that friends have ‘liked’. The link would then take a Facebook user to a page where they will be asked to perform an action such as clicking on a button that says the user is over 18. This action, in turn would activate a code that would automatically post a message that you have also ‘liked’ that subject on your wall and thus spreading the scam to your network.
While such action appears relatively harmless, Sophos technology consultant Graham Cluley warns that this could be adapted as a method of delivering malware through social media networks like Facebook.
3. Subscription Scams: A scam that lures users to unknowingly subscribe to a service that will automatically charge their mobile phone accounts or credit cards. This is usually accomplished by taking Facebook users to a page that requires them to perform a series of actions that culminates into the user giving his or her mobile phone number of credit card number.
4. Malware / Spyware Infested Links: A scam that also lures Facebook users into clicking on a link or pasting a code on their browsers that would activate a download of malicious programs such as worms, viruses, Trojans, keyloggers, etc into their computer. These malicious programs could then be used to collect personal data, hijack online accounts [bank, PayPal, email, Facebook], send malware infested links to email and social media contacts, control user’s computer to perform click fraud or ‘cyberwar’/DDoS, etc.
5. 419 Advanced Fee Scams / Romance Scams: This type of scam involves convincing Facebook users to send money in order to collect a lottery prize, to buy a non existent product, to become a part of a get rich quick or residual income scheme, or even to help a Facebook ‘Lover’ in distress.