Facebook's Hottest Scam: Fake Profiles



Do you know Tracey Candace? Whitney Ximena? Kathy Theresa? Bethany Zoe? Micheala Huntsman? I didn't think so and neither do any of the people I know who have befriended these fake profiles. I reported the profiles as fake and one has been taken down at the time of this writing. The question for a few hundred people, many of whom are my friends in real life, is why did you friend them on Facebook? Some good rules were proposed by a few of my friends:
These are a few pieces of good advice. Most often these profiles are for gathering and selling your personal info but rarely for spying. As my older brother said, "Tin foil hatters" may think that these fake profiles are authorities in Canada and the US as has been reported by a reputable news site. Most often they are phishers or people looking to collect data to sell. Fake Facebook profiles have also been used by students to make fun of teachers, by unknowns and administrators to spy on students and by police to bust underage drinkers.
I checked all of Gillian's 170 friends on Facebook and not one had a hint of fake although it's hard to know as she says. Below I have put in screenshots of fake profiles. The top profile, Tracy Candace, is the less sophisticated one and the bottom one, Whitney Ximena, which has since been pulled from Facebook, is more sophisticated using a photo and joining some pages and groups.
Most often these profiles claim to be women born between 1981 and 1990, although the stories referenced above include both fake men and women. They join a network and start friending everyone who will accept. Then they move on to add all of the friends of the first group and so on spreading like a virus. 
Most people could care less and that's part of why they accept these fake friends. We aren't preparing ourselves for the possible repercussions of fake profiles which include harvesting personal info, spreading spyware, phishing scams and many more shady moves. Have you been asked to befriend a 'fake' profile? Has anything bad ever happenned because you did? Do you care about fake profiles? Please comment below.
 
Original Photo by: Darren Hester remixed under Creative Commons License

1 comment:

  1. There are lots of fake or bogus websites that appear and criminals are using increasingly sophisticated methods to lure you to the site and encourage you to enter personal details or business.

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