Every single day, you likely spend a great deal of time on Facebook like so many other people do. There are notifications, posts, status updates, articles, photos, and so much more to scroll through, and it can sometimes make things a routine. Well, don’t get into the routine of just accepting any and every friend request that comes your way, especially if you get one from someone that you’ve already had as a Facebook friend for some time.
Sometimes, there are those friend requests that come through on Facebook and you don’t know who the person is. A little looking into it and you realize you may know them from high school, a chance meeting, or through mutual friends. Others you may not know at all, and you realize it isn’t a good idea to accept them.
Then, there are the Facebook friend requests that come from people you know very well and you’re easily familiar with the name. You take it upon yourself to accept their request and think nothing of it, but you really shouldn’t have done that.
That is especially true if you accept a friend request from someone you were already connected to on Facebook.
— Techn0cratic™ (@techn0cratic) February 13, 2017
It has been happening for a long time, but now, the fake Facebook friend requests are coming through in record numbers. One of the easiest ways for scammers to put one over on you and gain access to your personal information is to become friends with you and see things you allow friends to see.
They know that people don’t usually think twice about seeing a friend request from someone they know, and it’s hard to remember everyone who is already your Facebook friend. So, the scammers look at your Friends list, create a fake profile for someone you already know, and send you a request.
Rick’s Daily Tips reports that this is becoming even more of a common occurrence, and it leads to a lot more problems. The scammer ends up trying to become your Facebook friend, gaining access to even more of the people they know, and finding it easier to commit identity theft.
The scam artist could pretend to be that person, reach out to unsuspecting friends and request money or more. The friends may not realize that the request or inquiry is coming from a fake person and send them money or help them out.
Do not accept these friend requests. Do not help make things easier for the con artists.
If you receive a friend request from someone you are already friends with on Facebook, do some research. Reach out to the other account of your friend and let them know. If you find out the new account is fake, here is what you should do.
- Go to the profile page of the “person.”
- Click on the three-dots button and “Report.”
- In the pop-up box, click on “Report this profile.”
- On the next page, click on “This is a fake account.”
- On the last page, “Submit to Facebook.”
This will submit a report to Facebook and they will look into it, usually within 24 to 48 hours. Facebook has been pretty good at really looking into these fake accounts and removing those that can’t be verified as real.
Oddly enough, USA Today is reporting that some people are even receiving friend requests on Facebook from themselves. Some profiles even include your own picture, which they could easily grab from the internet somewhere and use it to try and become you and scam people.
Again, report this profile immediately and let Facebook know what is going on.
Having new people send you a friend request on Facebook is something that can be exciting or a bit concerning. Sure, you don’t know everyone out there and sometimes, you won’t even remember all those you have met in your lifetime. For your own sake, don’t always accept friend requests without looking into them a little bit more. If you get one from someone you’re already friends with, you really need to be wary of accepting it.
[Featured Image by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images]