Defending your digital presence from cyber criminals is crucial in the digital age. This blog post will make you aware of the latest threats lurking on platforms like Facebook and Instagram. Cybercriminals would love to access your social media accounts to scam your clients out of money. A common way they can gain access to your accounts is through phishing.
What is Phishing?
Phishing scams are deceptive attempts by cybercriminals to obtain your sensitive information, such as login credentials or financial data. They often pose as trustworthy entities to lure victims into their traps.
Common Phishing Tactics
Fake Login Pages
Hackers create convincing login pages resembling Facebook or Instagram, tricking users into entering their credentials. Ensure you verify the URLs you visit to ensure that you have yet to land on a tricky login page.
Cybercriminals may impersonate known brands, friends, or colleagues to gain your trust. If you receive strange messages from trusted friends, celebrities, or common brands, be cautious when following links or sharing any personal details, even your phone number, which can be used to log in to your Instagram and Facebook accounts.
Be cautious of links even when sent by friends, as their accounts might be compromised. Scammers will commonly send links via email, in messages, or tagged posts to capture your details. They often say your account "needs to be verified" or "violated a copyright." Be assured that Meta will only ever send you a push notification on their platforms if your page has violated a policy. They will not do any of the following - send an email from firstname.lastname@example.org, tag you in a post alerting you of your violation, or send you an Instagram message from a "Facebook support" page. Do not click any links until you verify the source.
Scammers offer enticing deals or promotions to bait users into clicking on malicious links. For businesses, they will promise to send you leads, ask about your latest products, and more to try and spark your interest. If an offer seems too good, ask the person to email you. If they are uncomfortable sending an official request to your email and insist you click a link, they are likely up to something suspicious.
Recent Phishing Scams We've Seen
Account Verification Scam
You might receive a message claiming your account needs verification, leading to a fake login page.
Beware of unsolicited messages from 'friends' with links to win prizes or access exclusive content.
Fake Customer Support
Hackers posing as platform support may ask for personal information.
Impersonation of Trusted Brands
Scammers often impersonate brands to run bogus contests or promotions.
Cybercriminals create fake profiles, build emotional connections, and then ask for money.
Here's how you can protect your business.
Verify Emails and Links
Always check the sender's email and hover over links to verify their authenticity.
Use Two-Factor Authentication (2FA)
Enable 2FA on your social media accounts for an extra layer of security.
Educate Your Team
Train your employees to recognize phishing attempts.
Report Suspicious Activity
If you encounter anything suspicious, report it immediately.
Regular Password Updates
Change your passwords regularly and use strong, unique combinations.
As small business owners, your online presence is a valuable asset; protecting it should be a top priority. Remember, prevention is your most potent weapon against phishing scams on Facebook and Instagram. Once you lose access to your account due to a cybercriminal's actions, it can become an uphill battle to regain control.
Stay informed, stay vigilant.