Social media scams to look out for in the New Year
Year after year social media platforms like Instagram, Youtube, Facebook and Twitter become more popular but, these platforms have also become a playground for fraudsters attempting to catch unsuspecting consumers off guard.
Kovelin Naidoo, Chief Cyber Security Officer at FNB, says although social media scams in South Africa are not yet prevalent, compared to our global counterparts; the reality is that they do exist.
“Given that the popularity of social media is set to remain for the coming years, consumers are encouraged to constantly educate themselves and their loved ones about the latest methods that fraudsters use to get hold of their victims’ personal information,” adds Naidoo.
Some of these methods include:
Blackmail – never share personal photos or videos on social media that portray you in a compromising position, they might be used to threaten you.
Phishing – banks don’t ask for personal details over social media platforms.Do not give them to anyone if asked over social media platforms.
Help and favours -never accept help and special financial assistance from strangers.
Never share your banking details with strangers and think twice before sending money to someone you recently met online or haven’t met in person yet.
Dating and romance scams – consumers who use social media platforms to meet companions or their life partners should look out for fraudsters that play on emotional triggers to scam people out of their hard-earned cash.
Dating and romance scammers often lower your defences by appealing to your compassionate side in order to take advantage of you.
Identity theft – avoid sharing personal information social media.
Fraudsters can steal your information and use it illegally by impersonating you.
Money laundering – scammers often trick people through social media platforms by claiming to have large sums of cash that they need to deposit urgently through a foreign bank account.
Do not allow your account to be used by another person to deposit or transact on. This can put you in serious trouble with authorities.
Furthermore, never open a bank account in your name on behalf of a person you have met on social media platforms, irrespective of the circumstances.