If you get a Facebook friend request from someone you’re already friends with, chances are it’s a scammer.
We told you about this devilish social media plot about a month ago, but according to FOX DC, the problem isn’t going away.
Here’s how it works:
A nefarious individual recreates a person’s Facebook profile using their profile photo, pictures and “About” information.
Then, the scammer sends “friend requests” to all of the targeted person’s Facebook friends.
Experts warn that someone could learn a lot about you by gaining access to all that’s on your profile, like your status updates, location, date of birth and photos.
They can also send messages to your friends, posing as you, in an effort to learn more about you, ask to borrow money or try to meet up with your friends.
A Maryland man told FOX DC that this happened to him. His friends ended up interacting with an imposter who had used his name and profile picture to create a similar page.
Those who unknowingly accepted the friend request started getting messages asking for money.
Cyber experts say older people, who may not be as familiar with the workings of Facebook, could be a prime target. For instance, a scammer could target a grandparent using a fake page that looks like their grandchild.
“They will say things like, ‘Oh, I’m out of state or in another country, and I lost my wallet. Can you send me $5,000 or $500?'” said Reginald Corbitt, who runs a cyber security organization called SafeCyber.
If you get a friend request from an existing “friend,” verify that the request is genuine before accepting it. And of course, be very wary of friend requests from people you don’t know.
Furthermore, it’s a good idea to tighten your security settings so that only your Facebook friends can view your profile, photos and other info.
Another tip: go into the “Friends” section of your Activity Log on Facebook.
At the top, it says, “Who can see your friend list?”
In the dropdown, select “Friends,” rather than “Public.”