(Not his real name, either.) Fraudsters like Omar lurk on Facebook in search of victims.When they find a target, they connect with them via video call on Skype or Facebook.Each perpetrator relies on different tools and techniques to victimize unsuspecting users. Some instances are entirely malware-based, whereas others exploit users’ sensibilities with the help of social engineering techniques.Here’s the story of one attack that pivoted on a Skype scam.For instance, users should never post too much information about themselves on Twitter or Facebook, as fraudsters could abuse that information to steal their identity.They should also be careful about whom they connect with on social media.
Let’s break down what happened to Samir with the help of a young scammer named Omar.These relationships are important to seniors' well-being.Thanks to everyone who taught older adults the magic of video chat, and special shoutout to these members who really rocked the campaign!I have a list of your friends and family from Facebook – your mum, your sister, your cousins.You have one week to send me 5,000 euros (£4,450), or I’ll send them the video.” Samir doesn’t have that kind of money, and even then, he’s not sure paying the ransom would stop the attacker from demanding more money in the future. Through video chatting, older adults can connect with family and friends afar. Loneliness can increase stress levels and, therefore, chances of disease in older adults.So you look for their weaknesses, and you exploit them. You see someone who looks like a sheikh, carrying the Koran, and you think, ‘There’s no way he’ll fall for this – but let’s try him anyway.’ And when you try, he falls for it.” Those tools help Omar earn 500 USD a day from the scam.The other weakness is when they are married, for example. Users can protect themselves against sextortionists like the one that targeted Samir by following some best practices for social networking sites.As a general rule of thumb, they should connect only with people whom they’ve met in real life.It’s important that organizations impart those lessons to their workforce.