Fraud detection on Facebook can be easy, especially if you know how to look for the signs. Fraud detection becomes even harder when the person you are connecting to appears to have multiple friends in common.
Here are ten things to help you identify potential fraud on Facebook:
1. You receive a friend request from someone you never met.
2. You receive a friend request from someone who appears to have common friends.
3. After accepting the friends request, the person engages you in conversation that has nothing to do with your business.
4. The conversation moves from business to personal conversation very fast.
5. The person makes up some unreal story (i.e. they’re a secret agent or an undercover reporter in the middle east, etc.)
6. The person only has one or two pictures on their profile.
7. The person appears to have no history of posting on their profile.
8. The person claims to be from the US and is now working or living in another country.
9. The person claims to be from one country, but post everything in another language not native to that country.
10.The person starts asking you personal questions in an attempt to continue the conversation.
Most business owners use Facebook for marketing and attracting new clients, so it can be easy to get caught up in the possibilities of connecting with someone new. And the fraudsters know this. They use the conversation to suck you in to their story. The longer you engage in the conversation the easier it is for the person to commit their fraud. The next thing you know they’re asking you to send money for some “emergency” or ask you to promote something for them in which you nothing about (i.e. helping them perpetuate their fraud).
If you choose to engage with someone that you don’t know on Facebook be sure to ask the following questions:
1. Where did we meet?
2. How do you know our common friend (insert name)?
3. How long have you been a part of (insert name of group)?
4. How did you find my profile?
5. Why did you send me a friends request?
If at any point in time the answers to these questions do not seem legitimate and/or their profile does not feel right, immediately stop the conversation, unfriend the person and report the profile to Facebook.