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Hackers Defrauded Missouri Woman of $4,000

According to news reports that appeared on September 4, 2009, a woman in Missouri (US) was duped by an e-mail scam that asked her to wire around $4,000. Actually, she had received an e-mail from Facebook account of a person who posed as her real-life friend.

In fact, the e-mail sender had hacked Grace Parry's Facebook account and sent e-mails to all her friends with a message that Parry and her husband were arrested by the London Police and needed money urgently.

A close friend of Parry, who lives in Missouri, received several of those e-mails as well as phone calls from a person who had the British accent and called himself an immigration official.

Sgt. Jason Selzer, Cape Girardeau Police, said that the scammer informed the woman (Parry's friend) that Parry and her husband were detained by the London Police and they needed more money to return home, as reported by etaiwannews on September 9, 2009.

Believing the scammer's fake e-mails as true, Parry's friend wired money three times to London.

On the other side, when Parry tried to access her Facebook account to inform all her friends about the scam, she could not login as the account had already been hacked. She used her husband's account to post the warning of the scam.

Meanwhile, Parry's friend, who transferred the money through Western Union, filed a complaint with the Police.

In view of escalating number of such cases, security experts have been warning users of social networking websites for several months that they are most vulnerable to scams. The reason for their vulnerability is the trustworthy environment promoted by these sites.

Graham Cluley, Senior Technology Consultant, Sophos, said in a blog post on September 4, 2009 that it was not always true that the message received by a social networking user had been sent by his friend only. It was also possible that scammers had taken control of that person's (friend) Facebook account for sending e-mails.

Cluley advises Facebook users that if they receive a message asking them for money transfer, then they should treat those senders as suspicious. Ask the e-mail sender to call at the phone number, which will make everything crystal clear.

Related article: Hackers Redirect Windows Live Search to Malicious Sites

» SPAMfighter News - 23-09-2009

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