Facebook scams of hijacking pages grows during holidays

Published: Dec. 22, 2021 at 10:36 PM CST
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - During the holidays, many people are off work and spend more time with family and friends. Not only in person but on social media.

Scammers know that and try to lure in victims by hijacking Facebook pages. A startling email in August had a chilling effect on Gayle Sole using Facebook today.

“It prompts you to change your password and that new password information went to the hacker’s email address which he then had total control of my Facebook page,” said Sole.

It still looks like her Facebook page but the messages are being sent from a phony friend.

“He is pretending to be me, and he sent a request to most of my friends with a ‘hi, how are you,’” said Sole.

Then comes the pitch for a link that can lead to a $100,000 grant after you pay a $1,000 fee. Husband Robby is also a friend of Facebook and he’s going in to check her Facebook page to find out what real friends might have fallen to this scam.

So far so good for friends of Chuck Phillips whose Facebook page got hijacked.

“I got from family and friends text messages saying ‘hey did you send out friend requests?’ I go no. So, I went on Facebook and put out a notice don’t accept anything from me,” said Phillips.

6 News replied to the scammer that the hacked Facebook page belongs to a retired Nebraska State Patrol captain.

“Closely worked with the cybercrimes task force so hopefully may have scared them off,” said Phillips.

But Gayle says she hasn’t shaken a scammer off her page even though she filed an online complaint report with Facebook three months ago.

“It should be easier to get ahold of Facebook because right now, we got a problem and there’s nobody to talk to. You can’t write to them, you can’t call them up,” said Rodney.

Until a hacker’s hold is broken, Gayle will warn followers by phone and email that posts from her Facebook age are not coming from her.

“And if they get any messages from me, it’s not me,” said Sole.

That’s being a real friend.

We’re still waiting for a response from Facebook on user questions about fraud. However, in the past Facebook suggested changing passwords frequently.

Also, be leery of emails with links that show an easy way to change passwords. The Facebook fraud reporting guide is the best space to go for reporting suspicious activity and/or potential scammers.

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