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Trust & Safety

Social Media Impersonation Fraud

Priya Patankar|2 min read|21 November, 2022

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Today social media has emerged as a platform connecting people from all across the world. It is also an important source of information, and news and has a far reaching impact on our day-to-day lives.

Social media impersonation fraud is a form of digital identity theft and it falls into the larger category of social engineering. It is a process of creating a fake profile of you or someone you know, and then using it to request money or sensitive information from others.

How does social media impersonation fraud happen :

  1. Fraudsters create a fake profile on social media using stolen information for which they have the same name and photos as the victim. It is also common for the fraudster to create profiles with some trusted business names in order to make the victim trust them.
  2. Customers are targeted and a request is sent using the fake account to friends and family members.
  3. Fraudsters always create a sense of urgency by asking money for emergency purposes, and in the heat of the moment the customer falls for the trap by transferring money.
  4. Sometimes, fraudsters also can hack your own account ( Eg. Instagram or Facebook ) and send requests asking for money from your followers list, by doing this the victim will think that request is coming from a legit account and will end up losing money. By doing this the access to the account also will be lost and many vulnerable customers end up losing their money.

How to stay away from social media scams :

  1. Do not click on any suspicious links. Clicking on such links will make you lose access to your social media account.
  2. Never share your personal information with any account where the profile details look fake.
  3. Never share your card details or OTP with anyone via phone, email, or any other means.
  4. Always verify the authenticity of information with official sources and company website. Verify the business name and website on their official site when there is a request from a business site, because there will be minute insignificant change in the name or website of the fake business profile.( and )

Important reminder — PhonePe never asks for confidential or personal details. Ignore all mails claiming to be from PhonePe if they are not from the domain. If you suspect fraud, please contact the authorities immediately.

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