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How to prevent being cheated on social networks

In olden days thieves used to rob us at night when all the family members were asleep. In this modern era Cyber thieves or Cheaters rob us during the day time, with our permission.Most of us are ignorant, or just don’t bother about it.

Most of the important safety features provided by the social networking sites revolve around a friendship request. People believe strangers are danger,  but thieves are common people and mingle among us. They are not strangers,even though you believe that your identity is safe, it may not be!

In the western world, photo privacy may not be an issue, but in a conservative country like India,people take much care to protect their images.Once someone can lay hand on your image, it will be a difficult task to set the image right, especially for women.

How cyber thieves gain access?

Whenever a new person wants to be your friend,a new friendship request is sent by that person to you. Once you accept that friend request, he/she gets access to most of your online activities on that social networking site, including albums, scraps, walls and so on.

STEPS IN CHEATING

I.When a thief or someone you hate want access to your profile, they just create a fake ID.

A.If you are a woman, they will create ID of a woman and vice versa in case you are a man, to avoid suspiction.

B.Add some of your friends to his/her friends list to create an air of familiarity

C.Wait for some days and create a lot of scraps.

D. Create an album with simple images.

E.Write some testimonials from other fake ID’s

F. Send a friendship request to you.

Most of the time, people accept friendship request from a stranger who is trusted by everyone else and falls  in the trap just like everyone else.

Some people avoid falling in this trap, but the cyber thief doesn’t back off, he comes with renewed power and energy, this time he/she changes his/her strategy.

II. Create a duplicate ID of one of your friends.

A.Most of the time we don’t care in adding someone a second time, eventhough we already have him/her in our friends list.

B.”Add me,My other ID just got deleted” or “My other ID got hacked, this is my new ID” or “Ignore messages from my old ID, this is my new one”

III. Create a new ID of one of your OLD friends who is not a member of the social networking site and who is not in regular touch with you.

IV.Create  a false login page and steal your password.

This is the most dangerous of all. Sometime you may get emails from the networking sites like orkut or facebook with links to their homepages. Some thieves use this method to steal your password. They send emails to your email account with a fake ID similar to the orkut/facebook mailing lists. When you click on the links you get redirected to a false homepage which looks exactly similar.

Most of the people who are unaware of this trap, just log in and surrender their password to the thief.

V. Sending greeting cards to all in your contacts list.

This is a new type of fraud, choosing festive seasons as seasons for fraud. I got this email, with a nice Christmas card. I clicked on the card and was taken to a website with a single Christmas card. I liked the card so  much that I wanted to send it to my friends and relatives. I searched for the option to send christmas card and clicked on the link.

I was redirected to another page which requested me to enter my email ID and password to fetch my contacts. I sensed the fraud and resisted the temptation to enter my account details.Though I liked the Christmas card, I valued my email account and password even more.

One password is linked to ten other passwords. When you lose your mail password, you lose your Bank ,paypal,facebook and a lot of other sensitive information in the mail accounts.And most of the time, passwords are same across different sites we visit.

HOW to avoid being cheated

1.Don’t add strangers

2. Call and inquire this friend

3.Lookout for duplicate ID’s

4.Avoid keeping sensitive data in your online profile.This is the easiestt step which will save you a lot of headache!

5. Don’t click on suspicious links.

Enter your email address:

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Look on the addressbar and confirm the homepage of your favorite websites.

6.Don’t give away passwords to send greeting cards.

7.Use security features provided on networking sites.

Though I have covered only a few of the frauds, hope this enlightens you to learn more.


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