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“You can slice and dice their audience to an almost ridiculous degree,” Roberts says.

I’m not sure how they ‘found’ you, but my guess is they have a few standard profiles set up with different photos and orientations, and they just click and repeat.“They sent you guys both straight and gay friend requests, which suggests they’re not being super careful when targeting new people.

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The scam seems nebulous and minor-league — so much so that it’s tough to understand the endgame.

That said, they probably warrant caution, so I reach out to Paul Roberts, who covers hacking and cyber threats as editor-in-chief of the cyber-security website , to better understand what these alluring — yet clearly malevolent — Facebook friend requests are all about. Most people aren’t that beautiful, Roberts says, stating the obvious.

Occasionally some scam will get enough reach that it actually becomes news.

Mostly, though, this stuff just persists in the background.” He says these profiles will eventually be flagged as “inappropriate” or “scam” profiles, which is done by clicking by the ellipses on the person’s cover photo, selecting “report” and following the on-screen instructions. “But by that time, the scammers have created 1,000 more identical profiles.

Sections: politics (1) business autos (1) jobs (1) career education (1) romance computers phones travel sports fashion health religion celebs tv-movies music-radio literature webmasters programming techmarket Links: (0) (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7) (8) (9) Nairaland - Copyright © 2005 - 2017 Oluwaseun Osewa. In security circles, we talk about ‘social engineering,’ which is basically online grifting.So a note with the friend request like: ‘Hey [YOUR NAME]! Just thought I’d connect with you on Facebook, too! ’ That may not fool you, but it fools a lot of people and is low-hanging fruit for any scam.’”Friend requests with no context but with ample cleavage or shredded abs suggest little premeditation, Roberts explains,and aren’t likely to work on anyone but the loneliest and most clueless targets.” I wondered aloud in the office last week.“Absolutely,” replied my fellow staff writer John Mc Dermott, laying out the logic: Brain: You’re getting catfished, idiot! “But usually the goal is to make connections and then send spam links or try to pull off scams,” e.g., romance scams, lottery scams, loan scams, access token scams, etc.The spokesperson says Facebook uses a range of automated systems to help detect and stop fake accounts, but they recommend not accepting suspicious requests — i.e., those from people you’re already friends with on Facebook; those from an attractive member of the opposite sex with whom you have no mutual friends; or those claiming to be “looking for love.” He adds that you should also be cautious of links, files and offers you receive unexpectedly — especially from people you don’t know.Perhaps they found you through a friend who is also gay, and they made an educated guess.

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