Published on Nov 11, 2021
Common Facebook Scams and How To Avoid Them
Although different sorts of social media sites have developed over time, Facebook continues to be one of the most popular. According to Facebook's most recent Earnings Report, Facebook has over 2.85 billion active members per month.
Children are more active on social media platforms these days. In addition, Facebook has a larger user base on average. Facebook continues to increase in popularity, despite the rise of TikTok and its risk or Instagram and its risk.
Of course, Facebook has many attractions and is a better social media site, but it also has drawbacks. Potential negativity of Facebook includes issues such as scams, identity theft, cyberbullying, vulnerability to sexual predators, malware, and many more.
Is Facebook Safe For Children?
Nowadays, children can access information with a single click, and they have developed a web surfing habit at a young age. Many of them realize that most of their questions may be solved with a quick search on the Internet.
And, with social media platforms like Facebook, Messenger, etc. children can stay up to date on what their friends are up to even if they're hundreds of miles away; they're more interested in likes and comments on Facebook posts.
But is all this access safe for kids? The answer, according to studies, is no. The risks of using Facebook are numerous. Scams are one of the most dangerous aspects of Facebook. Of course, Facebook has many entertainment features that are exciting for youngsters, but it also draws a variety of scammers.
Even while Facebook has several safeguards in place to prevent scammers from reaching users, some frauds will undoubtedly get through the cracks.
What Do You Mean By "Facebook Scams"?
A Facebook scam is a false post or page on a popular social networking site that spreads quickly through users' networks. Scam pages are designed to attract users to click the like button, write comments, or share posts by appealing to curiosity or sympathy.
Online scams come in a variety of forms, and children should be aware of them. Scammers generally target children because they are easier to target as children are unaware of the online dangers, such as facebook phishing. One method to educate your children to avoid scams is to teach them about online scams and their risks.
Example: Saisha receives an email telling her to connect to her Facebook account and read a crucial message regarding her account. The email contains a link to a strange-looking website that asks for her username and password. This type of email could be a scam attempt.
Types of Common Facebook Scams
Scams on Facebook occur when someone creates fake accounts or hack into accounts or Pages you've liked on Facebook. Scammers use these fake accounts to deceive you into handing them money or personal information. Some common types of Facebook phishing areas :
Scams of all forms all have one thing in common. They say that you have won a massive jackpot and try to mislead you into transferring their money or personal information. "You've won the lottery!" It's something that a lot of us are eager to hear. However, those statements can sometimes be used by fraudsters attempting to steal your money; not only children but even adults are victims of such schemes.
You can receive a message claiming that you have won the lottery and that you may collect your money for a small advance payment, and children may be tricked by the scammers leading into providing personal information out of their curiosity.
A romance scam, also known as an online dating scam, is when a person is fooled into sending romantic messages to someone they don't know, often pretending to be divorced, widowed, or in a poor marriage to fool them emotionally. Children are the most often victims of these types of fraud because they easily trust everyone.
They try to con their victims by posing as someone else and gaining enough trust to request images and videos to blackmail them for money. Every year, approximately 21,000 romantic scams are reported.
When someone obtains a child's sensitive personal information and uses it to obtain services or benefits or commit fraud, it is known as child identity theft. Scammers may use your child's Social Security number, name, address, or date of birth. Scammers attack children, earn their trust, and ask for personal information. They might be able to do anything with the stolen data. Such as:
- seek for government benefits such as health insurance or food stamps
- register for a bank account or a credit card
- fill out a loan application
IdentityTheft.gov is a website where you may report child identity theft to the Federal Trade Commission. Include as much information as you can.
Malware can be delivered via fake news, free offers, and other techniques. News or giveaway scams, like email scams, are designed to attract your attention. They want you to click on a dangerous link or share something that will spread malware. Here are several examples:
- Direct Messages including links or attempting to get you to view something.
- The links lead to a new log-in request for a Facebook/Email Provider, which is used to capture your account information.
Scammers use false or deceptive job postings to obtain your personal information or money. These types of scams typically target adult children. Not all job postings are scams, but you should be cautious of the ones that are.
When clicking on a link from a job offer, be careful of websites that appear unconnected to the original job posting or request sensitive information.
How To Avoid These Facebook Scams?
Facebook is an open platform that allows users to share personal information. Facebook is used by today's children, in particular, to share everything about themselves. They are unaware of the dangers of excessive Facebook use, and they are unaware that posting everything about yourself on Facebook might lead to several difficulties. To keep up with the trends, they frequently post everything on Facebook.
Follow these simple rules to keep your kids safe on Facebook and protect them from unexpected threats.
Use Strong Passwords
Because passwords are so important in online security, you should pay close attention to these Facebook features. Teach your children how to create strong passwords and the importance of password security. Teach children that their passwords should not be shared with anyone else, not even their best friends.
Teach your child how to create strong passwords by teaching them to use a combination of letters and numbers in their password, making it more difficult to crack. Longer passwords are also better, as each character adds a statistical advantage to your password.
Monitor Online Activities
Nobody likes to overstep their bounds, but when it comes to policing children's online activity, it's the only way to keep them safe from Facebook scammers. Monitoring your children's online activities ensures that they are safe when using Facebook.
You won't know if someone is talking to your youngster unless you keep an eye on them. Monitoring alerts you if your child (or their pals) makes a potentially harmful post. It warns you against cyberbullying and other potentially harmful actions such as scams. It's easy for someone to steal your child's identity and use it because they are prone to giving out too much information.
Teach them not to accept any unknown requests
Don't friend somebody on Facebook just because they want to connect with you. Fake profiles are used to carry out Facebook scams, phishing for personal information, and spamming. Teach your children that they should not add strangers to their Facebook friends list. Make them aware of the Facebook scam.
Teach your children that if they accept a friend request from a fake profile created by a hacker, they will not only be able to see everything you post on Facebook, but they will also be able to download your photos and information and create a fake account in your name, sending friend requests to all of your friends.
Stop Posting Personal Information
There's no reason to share personal information on your Facebook. Phone numbers, addresses, and other personal information should not be made public. Putting these bits of information on the Internet for anyone to see makes it easier for internet scammers to get their hands on them. Scammers target children because they are very open on Facebook and often post anything.
Teach your children that sharing personal information such as your address, phone number, birthday, and other personal details puts them in danger of identity theft, stalking, harassment, and other sorts of scams.
If You Feel Your Child Has Been Phished, What Should You Do?
If you suspect your child mistakenly entered their log-in or password into a strange link, someone else could be able to access their account. Here are some things you may do and teach your child if they find themself in this situation:
- If you have access to your account, learn how to protect it by changing your password, logging out of any devices you don't have, and encouraging your children to do the same.
- Learn how to recover your account if you can't get into it and your username or password doesn't work.
- Learn how to review recent activity and check recent Facebook emails to see if anything weird happened with your account.
Teach your children the above points and encourage them to do so if something similar occurs in the future.
A Few Additional Tips on How To Avoid Being Phished
- Messages requesting money, giving gifts, or threatening to remove or prohibit your Facebook account should not be trusted.
- Do not click any links or attachments if you get a strange email or message claiming to be from Facebook.
- Do not respond to messages requesting your password, social security number, or credit card number.
- Don't give out your personal information to someone you've only met online.
- Use a firewall and antivirus/anti-spyware software, and make sure they're up to date regularly.
- You can report a scam to the Federal Trade Commission at www.ftc.gov.
- Popups should be avoided. Do not click any of the popups that appear on your screen.
It is entirely up to you what you do with your Facebook account, but you should be aware of the various scams. The thin line that parents must occasionally maintain extends online, ensuring that children are aware of your presence but still respecting their personal space. You don't have to be worried about phishing schemes. Your child can use Facebook, and you won't have to worry about online frauds if you keep an eye on their online activities and follow the preceding instructions.