Social Media Scams
Who’s the target?
Anyone with a social media account
How does it happen?
Scammers utilize social media to carry out a variety of scams. One common clickbait scam starts with a private message containing a link to an exciting offer or even a “required software update.“ When you click the nefarious link, a virus is installed on your device, or malware can be installed, revealing your personal information to the scammer. Another common social media scam is impersonation.
It’s easy for fraudsters to create a fake profile or even hijack an existing profile and use it to convince you you’re sending money to someone you know when you’re really being scammed. Romance scams are also common on social media. A scammer can create a false profile and use it to lure unsuspecting victims into a romantic “relationship,” which ultimately leads them to request money from you in the form of wires or gift cards. It’s important to stay vigilant when interacting on social media to avoid these traps.
- Someone you don’t know messages you with a link to download an update, exciting offer or prize information
- Someone you know on social media suddenly messages you asking for money for an emergency
- They’re requesting you send them funds via wire, gift cards, or cryptocurrency
How can we stay safe?
- Don’t click on unsolicited links or pop-up messages on social media
- Create unique, strong, passwords for all your social media accounts, and do not share them with anyone
- Remember that offers that seem too good to be true are often scams
If you think you have been scammed:
- Contact your financial institutions as soon as possible
- If you’ve given the scammer any of your account passwords or PINs, change them immediately
- File a report on FTC.gov
- Contact the Social Security Fraud Hotline (if applicable)