Scammers exploit Facebook friendships

Most scams (online and off) depend, in part, on the victim’s interest in getting something for nothing. This is true for lottery scams, stock scams, and other frauds.


But a recent scam on the social networking site Facebook relies instead on trust and willingness to help friends in need.

A scammer hacked into the Facebook account of a man named Bryan Rutberg and posted an urgent message that he needed help.

Bryan‘s friends were fooled by the con and one even wired money to the scammer. To read the full story, see Facebook ID Theft Targets ‘Friends’.

To help prevent this kind of social networking scam, use caution when responding to urgent requests for help. Also, protect your account with a strong password.  For more tips, see 10 tips for social networking safety.


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About the Author
Eve Blakemore

Group Manager, Trustworthy Computing

Eve Blakemore is a Group Manager for Trustworthy Computing who delivers consumer guidance around the latest trends in security and privacy. Eve joined Microsoft in 1998 and has worked in corporate and field roles with Microsoft Learning, US Public Sector, Read more »

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  1. Anonymous

    I almost got scammed based on building a friendship on here.  I didn't send the requested money and actually accused the person of being a scammer.  The original picture on FB and My Space he had changed to someone I had never seen and the communication stopped.  I sent the alert to FB, but, before I could do anything on MySpace the site was removed.

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