Facebook 'Friend' Emergency Latest Online Scam

Cybercriminals hijack Facebook accounts to pose as friends in crisis
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 6, 2009 5:33 AM CST
Scammers have been targeting Facebook users by pretending to be friends who have been robbed and urgently need cash.   (Shutter Stock)
camera-icon View 1 more image

(Newser) – Fraudsters posing as friends who need emergency cash are scamming Facebook users out of thousands of dollars, CNN reports. Criminals filch Facebook identities, then bombard their friends with desperate-sounding messages pleading for money. The scammers often claim to have been robbed in a foreign country and beg the friend to help out with an immediate wire transfer to a hotel address.

"It's an invasion of your whole privacy, who your friends are," said one man who wired $1,000 to London to help a "friend" who had supposedly been robbed at gunpoint—only to discover later he was safe at home. Facebook urges users to keep passwords secure and be wary of anyone—even friends—asking for cash.