Safe from Scams: Social Media Scams

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Email and social networking sites are prime sources of communication.

One example, LinkedIn.

The business networking site has more than 330 million users. Con artists target the site because it has a high level of trust, leading some to let their guard down.

"I got this email that said, 'Hey, you received a message from one of your friends on LinkedIn," fraud victim Sharlann Houston said. "So, it took me a couple of days to look at it, when I opened it up it was from one of my friends that I was in the military with."

Sharlann said the ad was for a mystery shopper job since it was from a friend, she decided to check it out.

"I went and filled out a little questionnaire from it, and I was like okay, and so next thing I got was a phone call, and I was like okay, okay, I'm receiving a phone call from this random guy I didn't know who it was," she explained.

He wanted to send her a package so she could start her job but Sharlann decided she wanted to research the company. Then, she got another call.

"Have you checked your mail, I was like, okay, this is getting kind of strange, why does he keep bugging about checking my mail?," she said.

Inside the package was a $3,000 check she was told to deposit then go shopping and return the difference. If she had, she would have learned the check was a fraud.

"Since she knows the person, she went ahead and supplied her information," US Postal Inspector Sean Lynch said. "Well, as it turns out, the bad guys got the information, they hijacked the friend's account and then began to call her and solicit her to receive fraudulent checks."

She also notified LinkedIn.

"They had already informed me that they had some other cases going on, and so they have their own investigation going on concerning that," she said.

Always wait and question if someone is asking for your personal information.

Routinely changing your passwords is always good practice.
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