Nigerian Scammers Hit Facebook

November 10th, 2008 at 12:00 am

facebook scam nigeria africa

Remember those emails from Africa saying that you inherited some money and that you should send over a deposit to claim it? Well, they’re back although in a different form now, Facebook.

Back when the scammers used email, they did succeed a couple of times but when the public grew aware and spam filters got better, the scam slowed down significantly.  Now however, them Nigerian scammers are hacking into Facebook accounts and targeting contacts to get some money.

It’s quite simple actually, first they hack an account using a malware key logger from a totally different source.  When they get into a compromised user account, they begin contacting friends using Facebook’s message service or IM service.  That’s where they try to convince their target to send over money.

Karina Wells from Sydney experienced this.  Luckily she was smart enough to detect it was a scam.

On Friday, Sydneysider Karina Wells received a Facebook message from one of her friends, Adrian, saying he was stranded in Lagos, Nigeria, and needed her to lend him $500 for a ticket home.

Adrian used relatively good English but, after chatting further, words such as "cell" instead of "mobile phone" tipped Wells off that she was not talking to her friend but someone who had taken over his account.

Wells played along with the scammer, who asked her to transfer the money into a Western Union account.

"Naturally I was concerned as, to all intents and purposes, this seemed to be legitimate," she said.

"I pretended that I would help, obtained all the details of where he was and forwarded them to both Facebook and the relevant authorities." [Sydney Morning Herald]

So there you have it.  Always, always be smart on the web.  Scammers are relentless and will penetrate anywhere and anything just to get into your wallet.