Huge increase of Whatsapp fraud

in LeoFinance •  2 months ago 

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Huge increase of Whatsapp fraud

With great amazement I read a news item about the enormous spike in Whatsapp fraud this year.
https://nltimes.nl/2020/10/12/sharp-spike-whatsapp-fraud-nearly-10000-reports-far-year
In the Netherlands only there are already 10.000 registered cases in 2020 until now. This is 4 times as much than in 2019. I haven’t received any of these messages myself, but I do hear from people they have received these messages.

How does it work?

With Whatsapp fraud, also referred friend-in-need scam, cybercriminals contact their victims on Whatsapp and pretend to be a friend or family member in need.
They usually do research on their victims before they attack. The victims contacts are inventarised on Social Media. This is also where they grab the Profile photo they use for their attack to make it more convincing.
The criminals contact their victims telling them they have a new phone number and that they can remove the old one. After that they come up with a story that they are in financial problems. They urgently need to pay a bill and ask the victim if they can transfer a certain amount of money.
Usually they have bank accounts of money mules to collect the money and then channel it through to other accounts.

Who would fall for this?

The first thing that came up in my mind when I read this was "Who would actually fall for this scam?"
How is your relationship with your friends and family that you actually transfer money without even speaking to someone?
Sure, the the criminals are decisive and try to trick you into this, but how gullible can you be?
According to the numbers of victims a lot of people do fall for it.
Over 1,154 people have been reported as victim of this type of fraud in 2020 only resulting in a damage of 3.3 million euros! Wow!

How to prevent yourself?

The moral of this story is to always check who you are dealing with when you’re going to transfer some money. The cybercriminals are smart, because when you phone them they won’t pick up.
If you don’t know if for sure you’re dealing with the right person, ask them a question only they can answer. If they can’t you’re dealing with an imposter!

Take care!

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@friendlymoose, Emotional State is very Vulnerable aspect and many use this point to do Fraudulent Activities. Stay blessed.

As it becomes a mainstream app all over the world, this is going to be more and more common.

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I'm afraid you're right.

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