Just last week, we here at Komando.com warned you about a new Facebook scam where hackers re-create an existing Facebook profile using their victim’s profile picture and “About” information. Criminals then use the phony new profile to send friend requests to that same person’s Facebook friends.
Once accepted, the stranger then has access to your personal details like your status updates, location, birthday and even your photos. On top of that, criminals can chat with you online, tricking victims into thinking they are chatting with friends - and that's exactly how one woman in Rio Rancho, New Mexico was duped out of $10,000.
It all began when an "old friend" reached out to the victim, asking how she was doing. After several chats, her "friend" asked her if she had gotten her share of her winnings from a lottery she had won. The friend's name was apparently on a winner's list, posted on a scam lottery site, filled with typos and grammatical errors.
Since the news was coming from a "friend," the victim decided to check it out. She visited the scam website, complete with photos of previous winners, and she even called the phone number provided on the site and got answers to all of her questions from someone claiming to be Mr. King.
According to Mr. King, all the victim had to do was deposit $10,000 into a specific Bank of America account, and she would be rewarded for her investment with $600,000. She told her local news outlet, "It seemed pretty good to me."
Later that weekend, the victim physically spoke to the friend she thought she was chatting with on Facebook, only to discover the real friend had no idea what she was talking about.
She quickly went to stop any transactions, but the damage had been done. The money was gone and soon, she had several different alerts and notifications that someone was trying to access her other accounts.
The victim asked not to be identified because she is so embarrassed for falling for this scam, but scams can be tricky if you don't know how to spot the warning signs. Here's an example of the scam site's home page - how many errors can you spot?
How many things did you spot wrong? Click through to the next page for a cheat sheet of the red flags.
Here's a cheat sheet of the red flags on the website that the woman missed.
- There is foreign text.
- The address is not in the right format. I have family in Maumee, Ohio, so right off the bat, I knew the area code for the phone number provided is not to a Maumee number. Area code 501 is actually for Little Rock, Arkansas.
- Subscribe to our what? Never give your email address if you don't know what you're getting in return.
- How many typos can you spot? On top of spacing errors, missing periods and apostrophes, "Promotoion" is spelled wrong, "It free" ... the list goes on.