Social media scams are nothing new, but they continue to prevail and trick even the most cautious of users. Here’s what to look out for and how you can avoid becoming a victim.

Duplicate Accounts
Did someone you’re already friends with just send you a friend request? Don’t accept it! It’s most likely not your friend, but an impersonator trying to scam you. If you and the real friend share a number of connections on Facebook, you’ll notice that the cloned account will have 0 to just a few shared friends (the few they’ve already tricked into accepting).

Direct Messages
Receiving a random Facebook message requesting you open a link is a red flag. Even if the person is your friend, don’t rush to click on it! People’s accounts get hacked all the time, so any unexpected message should be viewed with caution. Scammers use this method to perpetrate emergency scams, money-making schemes, false sweepstakes winnings, and more.

How to Protect Yourself
• Use Two Factor Authentication (2FA). Go to your privacy password settings in Facebook and opt for 2FA. This will make it much harder for someone to hack your account.
• Check Your Accounts. Be sure to check your financial accounts regularly for fraudulent charges. The sooner you catch a wrongful charge, the more likely it can be resolved!
• Report Scams. If someone clones your account or sends you malicious links/messages, report them to the social media platform and to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) at

Scams like these are not strictly on Facebook, so be sure to update your security and privacy settings on all your social media pages and other online accounts.

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