Facebook Cloning: A New Kind of Cyberattack
The evolution of portable technology over recent years has resulted in a society accustomed to instantaneous communication.
Coinciding with the increasingly popular use of smart phones, laptops, and tablets, social media has quickly become one of the most favored forms of direct communication for both professional and personal use due to its fast-paced nature.
The unfortunate reality is: the rise of social media, while both useful and entertaining, has also given cybercriminals an easy way to target unsuspecting victims.
Social engineering, a form of cyberattack that works by exploiting human psychology instead of using technical hacking techniques, has become a popular method for cybercriminals who utilize social media in their criminal activities. Rather than using malware to target a victim, a social engineer manipulates the victim into sharing their personal information by
disguising themselves as a trusted source.
Facebook cloning is a new kind of social engineering attack that is particularly dangerous because it does not require the scammer to have technical skills, and anyone with insufficient privacy settings is at risk of becoming a victim.
What is Facebook cloning?
Facebook cloning is exactly as it sounds; a scammer clones a victim’s Facebook account by stealing their personal photos and information and creating a new account with their stolen identity. They proceed to friend request people on the targeted victim’s friends list, many of whom accept the request with the belief that the person has simply made a new account.
Why is Facebook cloning so
While Facebook cloning cannot technically be identified as “hacking” because the attackers are not actually gaining access into the victim’s Facebook account, it can still be detrimental to the victims involved.
Once the scammer builds a believable profile, they will utilize their stolen identity to manipulate “friends” into sending them money.
According to Hoax-Slayer, a cybersecurity website that aims to debunk Internet scams and hoaxes, “Scammers may try to draw the friends into advance fee scams claiming that the victim has won a large sum of money and offering the “friend” the chance to also win. They may send messages that claim the victim has been stranded in a foreign country and needs a short-term loan to get out of trouble.”
The recipients of the messages may be more willing to send money because they are under the impression that they are sending it to a trusted source.
If you suspect that you are being contacted by a cloned profile, be sure to contact the person outside of Facebook to confirm their identity.
How can you protect your account from Facebook cloning?
While there is no guaranteed way to protect your Facebook account from being cloned, there are precautions you can take to help prevent it from happening.
In addition to being aware of the potential of Facebook cloning, one of the best ways to protect your account information from
potential scammers is to make sure that your privacy settings are secure.
Facebook allows you to adjust your privacy settings to determine who can see your profile activity and account information.
Making sure that your privacy settings are set so that your friends list, photos, and personal information are hidden from the public is one of the most efficient ways to ensure that your private information stays private.
Learn more about how to identify and prevent Facebook cloning at Hoax-Slayer.net: https://www.hoax-slayer.net/what-is-facebook-cloning-and-how-can-i-protect-myself-from-it/