Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Internet Scammers Are Now Using Social Networking Sites

For all my readers that have not seen a new post from me for a while, I want to offer my apologies. It is not because I was being lazy; I was a victim of fraud. Someone hijacked my email address through one the social networks and managed to change my password, secret question, and my alternative email address.

It was a very unnerving experience, I was actually locked out of my account for a total of 5 weeks. It seemed like that Google's security measures were more effective for keeping me from retrieving my account than it was for protecting it. The worse part was that all my internet business was tied to my Gmail account: Gmail, Blogger, Adsense, and the big one Adwords.

I believed that the hijack occurred on Facebook. It happen simple enough, someone solicited me for a JV and I accepted. To make communications better we exchanged emails and then I was sent a phishing link which was designed to access my computer. I cannot express enough how much this simple mistake cost me mentally,time wise and financially.

I have since decided to exercise extreme caution when attempting to network on the internet. Here are few precautions that I would like to share with you to avoid scammers in these social networking sites.

1. Do not use your email in your profile, you can always retrieve your messages directly from the social networking websites inbox.

2. Do not exchange email with anyone until you have verified who they are and if their business is legitimate. In fact I would go as far as to do a reverse phone search on them.

3. Make sure that your computer is equipped with a good virus protection, Spyware and Registry cleaner...Trust me it is well worth the investment.

4. Be careful of the announcements on your profile page that informs that someone has posted your pictures all over the internet.

5. Do not click on any link that you do not recognize or cannot read as a word. If you click on a link by mistake, do not follow the link off the social networking site.

6. Use Mozilla Firefox and make sure that all your security systems are ON. I switched my other browser due to Internet Explorer problems.

7. Do not have the same password and security questions...etc for the all your accounts with Google or any other major company that you have several different accounts with. The results are if someone hijacks your account, they have access to all your business.

8. Do not save your secret passwords in your email account.

These measures may seem excessive, but avoiding the headaches and loss of revenues that scammers may cost is priceless.

1 comment:

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