Watch out: there’s another Facebook scam about

‘Is this you?’ asks a ‘friend’ on Messenger. Don’t reply – they’re phishing for passwords

When you click on the fake link, you are asked to re-login to Facebook. What actually happens is that scammers are collecting your email and password information, then taking over your account. Photograph: iStock

When you click on the fake link, you are asked to re-login to Facebook. What actually happens is that scammers are collecting your email and password information, then taking over your account. Photograph: iStock

 

“Is this you?” If you’ve got that message in your Facebook Messenger inbox in the past few days, delete it. It’s another week, another Facebook scam.

This particular scam never really seems to go away on Facebook, but it seems like the last few days have seen a spate of status updates from people warning their friends not to open the fake messages.

It comes from a seemingly trusted source – a Facebook friend rather than an anonymous or unknown account – and when it arrives, it has a link with your profile picture in the thumbnail. You might be curious; after all, it comes from a friend. But it’s safe to say that you shouldn’t click on the accompanying link, nor should you enter your logon details if prompted.

It’s simply another phishing attack trying to get unsuspecting Facebook users to hand over their details. When you click on the fake link, you are asked to re-login to Facebook. What actually happens is that scammers are collecting your email and password information, and then taking over your account to send more spam messages.

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If you were fooled by the message and clicked the link, change your Facebook password straight away. If you use the same email address combination on any other sites, change those too. It’s never a good idea to reuse passwords, although we’re almost all guilty of it at some point or another.

Let your Facebook friends know that your account has been compromised and that they shouldn’t open any links in messages from you. It might also be a good idea to alert the person from whose account the message originated, as they will need to change their details too and may not even be aware their account has been compromised.

It’s always worth developing a thick layer of cynicism. Being more suspicious could just save you a lot of bother in future.