You know how some gifts are insanely sought after each year, selling out in mere minutes? Well, these are great tools for scammers, especially on social media.
They may have a story about a spouse accidentally buying a 2nd item, so they are selling one, or a story about a hardship that has happened that requires you to sell them. Normally, we might blow these off as scams, but what if the poster is someone you know?
Stolen social media accounts are great for this type of scam because there is a level of trust already built between the people. From puppies to PlayStations, items get listed for sale through stolen social media accounts all the time, but especially during the holidays.
To keep from having your account used against your family and friends, don’t reuse passwords across multiple websites, sometimes a site gets breached and the list of usernames and passwords are used to try to log into other accounts. Also, enable multi-factor authentication (MFA) or 2FA on all accounts, this will have you enter an additional code from a text message or a smartphone app that can help keep the account safe.
If you are buying something, be careful if a deal is too good to be true. Be cautious paying with electronic means such as PayPal or CashApp, making sure you use a method that is protected. For example, PayPal as a method of payment meant for sending money to family members that doesn’t charge a fee, but it also offers no protection against scammers. Scammers will often try to trick someone into using a method like that. Don’t fall for it.
Trust your instincts and they will usually lead you right. Be safe out there this holiday season.