Security

Top 5: Ways people get scammed on social media

Scamming happens all the time on social media, and some of the schemes are much less obvious than you'd think. Here are the top ways people get tricked.

Social media is fun isn't it? Except when you're arguing with your uncle. Or anyone's uncle. Or when you're getting scammed. Some scams are obvious. But are all of them? Maybe not.

Here are the top five types of scams to avoid on social media:

1. Romance

Someone can sweet talk you into any of the scams we're going to mention here, so keep your guard up. Also, be very careful about what pictures you share with whom.

2. Phishing

This seems obvious, but with more and more companies offering real support on social media, remember. Your bank will never ask for your account number on social media. Or your PIN or your password.

SEE: 10 ways to raise your users' cybersecurity IQ (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

3. Identity theft

Along these lines, watch out for people privately messaging you and in any convincing way saying they need your driver's license number or social security number. Those aren't things you give out on social media to anyone. Ever.

4. People asking for help

Human beings, despite what your uncle might say, want to help each other. But you need to be careful. Asking for help on social media is a common entryway to a scam especially for someone who has hijacked a friend's account.

SEE: Password management policy (Tech Pro Research)

5. Money laundering

Sure you want money to be clean, but not at your expense. If someone wants to transfer money to you temporarily or even worse, wants you to open an account for them, just say no.

I see you shaking your head at some of these, but just wait until that moment you almost fall for one of these. Scammers are scammers because they're good at tricking people into thinking they're the exception to the scam.

Be careful out there folks!

Also see:

About Tom Merritt

Tom is an award-winning independent tech podcaster and host of regular tech news and information shows. Tom hosts Sword and Laser, a science fiction and fantasy podcast, and book club with Veronica Belmont. He also hosts Daily Tech News Show, coverin...

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