5 Most Common Ways Scammers Use Social Networking for Cyber Attacks

Enterprise Networking Magazines help users to be aware of scams. Cyber attacks are constantly on the increase. This article will help the users to know much more about scams. Read on these to learn more about these scams and how to spot and avoid them.

Internet social networks like Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, telegram, and Facebook have revolutionized how we interconnect and conduct businesses. Tweeting, liking, and Googling have become the action verbs in the 21st century, similar to how faxing and texting entered our vocabulary in the 20th century.

Today, Facebook has over 1.4 billion members. If it were a country, it would be the most populous country on Earth. Like any large population base, there are people on Facebook trying to get away with a variety of scams.

From fake applications to fake like buttons and more, Scammers are emerging on social networks at a high rate. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) even has a webpage devoted to the subject. It’s a recommended read for any individual or small business owner with a social media presence.

There are a variety of risks in cyberspace, and here are five of the most dangerous social networking scams currently out there:

  1. Fake news
  2. Fake offers
  3. Fake apps
  4. Like jacking
  5. Clickjacking

Read on these to learn more about each of these scams, as well as how to spot and avoid them.

Fake NewsOne type of this hoax impersonates Facebook itself, spreading speedily. A scam message says that Facebook has released a new membership pricing structure with gold, silver, and bronze levels of membership. It claims that you can avoid paying by sharing the message’s text with your family and friends before midnight. If not, says the news, you’ll be forced to pay next time you sign on to Facebook.

This scam spreads because it appears friends are doing their friends a favor by sharing with them. Not only is Facebook a free service, but Facebook has also publicly stated several times that it will always remain so.

Fake Offerings Invitations to join fake events or bogus groups, with incentives such as gift cards, abound on social networks. Joining frequently requires the user to share passwords, permissions, and financial information with the scammers, or at the very least, send a text to a premium rate phone number.

Sometimes this fraud offers an old, but surprisingly still effective new, technique — the chain letter. Twitter messages claiming that retweeting them will result in Bill Gates or some other billionaire donating several dollars to some charity or disaster relief fund are entirely false. That’s not how charitable contributions work.

Fake Apps According to research from the Cheetah Mobile Threat Lab and charted by Business Insider Intelligence, there has been a sharp rise in fraud applications targeting social networking. They are designed to trick people into revealing personal details and granting permissions so scammers can access mobile devices and steal passwords, credit card info, and more.

In just the first eight months of last year, over 15,000 fake applications affected more than 100 million users across all the major social networks. More than half (8,107) were on Facebook alone. Before downloading any application, always check the file size — fake applications are usually tiny. If the application asks to send text messages or access the Internet for you, it is likely affected. Think two times when apps request permissions to access data stored on your device or other apps or perform actions on your behalf. Finally, any app that wants a password or additional confidential information should avoid this at all costs.

Like Jacking, The ubiquitous Facebook “like” button is easy to abuse. Put it on your page, and if a Facebook user visits your site and clicks on it, the URL to your page gets added to their activity stream. Suddenly, their family, friends can see that link, click on it, and be led directly to your page. When that second person arrives, the Like button is personalized for them — it shows which of their friends have already clicked it, and when they click on it, a URL to your page gets added to their stream.

Like jacking attempts to get users to falsely endorse products, using posts that are likely to attract viewers, such as offering a gift, it then spreads through automatically generated shares and likes. The initial position may be enabled through a hacked account or the acceptance of a request to add a friend who turns out to be a scammer.

To protect yourself from like jacking, use caution in clicking, liking, or sharing posts and be extremely wary about any free offers. Facebook users are encouraged to be skeptical of messages posted on social networks, even from friends. Users should also avoid downloading files or filling out questionnaires to see a picture or a video.

ClickJacking occurred when a scam artist or cyber crook took an invisible button or other user interface element over a seemingly innocent web page button or interfaced feature using a transparency layer, which you cannot see.

Facebook Like and Share buttons have been hidden under other buttons. When clicked, users would voice their preference for something or share something with their friends unknowingly to generate viral marketing for a product or to propagate malware.

Enterprise Networking is a technology magazine that talks about enterprise networking solutions that can redefine business goals of tomorrow.