You are busy going through your Facebook feed. You come across a post with a link from “YouTube” asking you to click the link to view a song. You do that, and you immediately realize that this is one of those sneaky links that set you up for fraud! Before you get out, your personal information has already been compromised. It’s the new reality we are faced with within the new age. There are thousands of social media scammers roaming in popular social media platforms like YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn, just to mention a few. It’s tiring, we know, and a good number of us even feel like we’d rather just keep off all social media and keep off such stressful situations.
However, social media is too fun for us to just give in that easily. So, let’s put up a fight, shall we? First things first, to protect yourself from the bad guys on the internet, you must make sure that all your online activity is well-protected. For instance, ensure that all your accounts are protected with strong passwords. And if you have accounts where you move money in one way or another, say in an online casino like https://gg.bet/en-ca/casino, use extra protection measures like two-factor authentication. That way, you’ll make it more difficult for fraudsters to get to you. With that in check, here are more tips to help you protect yourself from social media scammers:
1. Be careful with every link you come across
While it may not seem practical to inspect every link you encounter in social media, such is the daunting reality that we are faced with today. Every click you make should be done so with utmost care that you don’t end up falling victim to a scam. There are fewer worse feelings than being scammed, and there are so many ways things could all go wrong with just one wrong click. Viruses, ransomware, identity theft, and many other fraud-related cases are rife these days. So, how do you identify these suspicious links? Here’s how:
- Do they appear to come from a reputable source like YouTube, and in reality, they aren’t? That is most likely a scammer trying to scam their way to your personal information.
- If this link is hell-bent on knowing financial information like your credit number, then you may be gifting them leeway to your hard-earned money. Don’t be tricked into disclosing your banking details.
- Phishy Links: These are links from an unknown website or one that prompts you to download something that you may come across on social media. This may be a way to infiltrate your personal information and potentially lead you to a scam.
2. Limit your biographical data
Not everyone has to know about your personal details on your social media bio. Fraudsters often use this data as an avenue to collect information about you. You are making their work that little bit easier for them because you eliminate the need for them to conduct a background check on you – you already gave them all the information they required!
If you share too much on your bio with every Tom, Dick, and Harry on the platform, the data makes it easier for these fraudsters to profile you. So, to keep your information safe, you should instead limit who can view your biographical data. Thankfully, all the popular social media apps have settings that can let you introduce limits to who can view your biographical information. Before we continue, why don’t you take a minute to go over to your social media page and limit your biographical data to only people you imagine you can trust?
3. Verify all the requests coming your way
The people behind most of these scams are cunning. They create fake accounts to draw you out into trusting them. This allows them to collect information that they may use to defraud you. The commonly used social media term for these types of accounts is “catfishes.”
To avoid falling prey to catfishing, you must be on high alert. For example, if an organization has allegedly contacted you, try to find out the validity of the account. You could also try contacting the organization via phone to ascertain the identity of the account in question – it’s one of the easiest ways to save yourself the trouble of being catfished. Additionally, you should never be pressured into accepting a friend request or a follow request because that is how scammers sometimes reel you into their traps.
4. Clear all your previous social media profiles
Remember that past Facebook profile you made 10 years ago and probably even forgot you, had it? It may be an avenue for someone to scam you, as the account may have personal information that could be used against you. So, Make sure you delete all your past social media accounts to prevent anyone from getting hold of your data.
There is only so much we can recommend for helping you protect yourself from getting scammed. The truth is that the buck stops with you. It’s up to you to look out for yourself so that things don’t turn sour for you on otherwise fun social media platforms. Take preventive measures to ensure you don’t fall prey to a social media fraudster.