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Clues for spotting fake profiles. One day Georgina received a friend request from a serviceman on peacekeeping duties in Afghanistan. She decided to accept the request and allowed 'Jim' to be her Facebook friend. Soon after befriending her, Jim told Georgina he had lost his wife to cancer and his story of looking after her was similar to her own experience when her husband had died of cancer. S military was nearly finished. He sent me pictures which I now know were stolen from someone on the internet.

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Subscriber active since. Facebook is arguably one of the safer corners of the Internet, with fairly complex security and privacy controls.

But when passwords get busted, even on Facebook, not everyone is whom they're pretending to be. A former university colleague "Evan" passed along this Facebook conversation, which he promises really happened to him. In it, a scammer takes over one of his real-world friend's s "Calvin"pretends to be stranded in London, and asks for money to get a plane ticket and pay hotel bills.

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We've asked Facebook about how common these types of scams are -- one made the rounds last November -- and what they do about them. Update: Facebook response below.

In the meantime, a friendly reminder to be skeptical on the Internet, even when you think you're talking to someone you've known for years. Calvin: hey Evan: holy moly. Calvin: i need your help urgently Evan: yes sir Calvin: am stuck here in london Evan: stuck?

Calvin: you can have the money send via western union Evan: oh yeah that's true Calvin: will you go and send it now Evan: well i don't know Calvin: you can have it send online now www. Thanks Evan: sure thing man Evan: ok one question Calvin: are you sending it now? Evan: what was the name of our high school mascot?

Have you been scammed?

Evan: hello? Evan: cal? Calvin: my sister Evan: your english is bad it does not sound like the english of someone from the us so no one will believe you Calvin: how can you teach me Evan: ok i will. Calvin: they dont send western union here we only receive Evan: what country are you in?

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Calvin: nigeria Evan: i have bad news for you many americans know about nigerians sending s to this country to try to get money Calvin: yes Evan: it is a trick that we know about so we are very careful Calvin: eeeeeeeeeeeeh Evan: you will not find a stupid person to send you money Calvin: i have got some Evan: well good job Evan: do you live in lagos or in another city?

Calvin: Lagos how did you got to know Evan: i am a student of the world i would like to travel to lagos Calvin: lagos is a place to be to visit so full of enjoyment so when are you coming Evan: why do you steal money from people?

Calvin: i need money for my college fees but i wanna stop i promise i will stop but you people slave us during the 60s Evan: we did not have slaves in the 60s Calvin: but you about the slave trade Evan: yes that is true but slaves have been illegal here for almost years Calvin: i can see that you ae a law student why can't you become a lawyer Evan: i will be a lawyer in 2 years when i finish school Calvin: ok Evan: how old are you?

Calvin: 27 i need work i eed a god job Evan: there are many nigerians in america do you know anyone who has gone to another country?

Calvin: i know there many nigerian that is in america i want to come to america to complte my education Evan: maybe i will visit someday i hope you don't steal any more money good luck finding a job Calvin: sure Calvin: tunde Evan: i must go tunde be well my friend Calvin: cant we be friend can you add me on your facebook friends Evan: i am sorry, but due to the odd circumstances of our initial greeting, i must terminate this relationship.

Calvin: am sorry for that evan Evan: as am i, tunde as am i. This is a very low volume attack, affecting only a small of users, but the potential impact to an individual user is high so we're taking it very seriously.

Our team has already detected various trends in the s of users who have been compromised. We're using this data to quickly surface compromised s, ideally before the spammers have gotten very far.

Fraud moves onto social networking sites in the hopes of fooling users into sending cash.

When we find compromised s or they are brought to our attention, we're working to make sure the s get back to their rightful owners as soon as possible. First, we are disabling the because, in some cases, the spammer has added a new contact address and removed the old one. We're reminding users to be very suspicious of anyone, even friends, who ask you over the Internet to send money.

Please verify their circumstances through some other means than the web e. If you see something that looks amiss with any of your friend's s, please report it to us through one of the contact forms on the site. World globe An icon of the world globe, indicating different international options.

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