Facebook impostors are proliferating alarmingly as reported by the media. What started as a social networking website founded five years ago by Mark Zuckerberg, then a Harvard computer science major student, along with his colleagues, to communicate with friends and other contacts, has now become a medium for unscrupulous individuals to hatch their evil schemes.
Just recently, alarming exposĂ©s on scam artists, hackers, identity thieves and other Facebook Impostors posing as friends and stealing personal information from members rocked the global social networking community drawing almost universal criticism of the website.
One report tells of Bryan Rutberg of Seattle, USA, whose account was used to extort money from his friends. Rutbergâs impostor posted âBryan NEEDS HELP URGENTLY!!!â on his status update to which one of his friends responded by sending money to London where Rutberg was allegedly robbed and in need of fare to get back to the U.S.
In another event, Anthony Stancl, a resident of New Berlin, Wisconsin, solicited naked photos of high school boys by posing as a woman on his Facebook account. He purportedly used the photos to compel the young men to engage in sexual acts with him. Stancl was later seized by authorities on grounds of 12 complaints of felony, which included âsexual assault of a child younger than 16 and possession of child pornographyâ.
Even a public official like President Bharrat Jagdeo of Guyana wasnât spared from this vicious online modus operandi. In his case, an account was set up containing 174 supporters and two photo albums featuring the Berbice Bridge in Guyana and pictures of international leaders, some posing with the South American head. Jagdeo denied any involvement on the existence of the account and sought the assistance of the police to investigate on this matter.
In the light of these disturbing incidents, how do we ward off Facebook impostors?