Hacked Facebook posts are making few friends

Staff writer

Leah Ann Ulmer and Racheal Dvorak are two of millions of Facebook users who have been plagued by spam that wrongly proclaims to their friends that they had quit their jobs.

“I am really nervous,” the fraudulent posts say. “I’m about to quit my job on Monday after 12,376 days of putting up with my childish boss. I think it’s time. I really have no clue why I’m workin’ there anymore when I’ve been generating about $300 every day for the last six months working from home. Thank God I came across this webpage.”

A link that follows takes people to a website filled with malware.

In the case of one Marion resident who does not wish to be named, even after changing her account passwords several times and deleting any possible fake accounts from her friends list, her account still was sending out spam messages.

“I don’t want to delete my account and lose all my photos and contacts, but I don’t know what else to do to get rid of this spam,” she said in a post pleading for help from her friends.

She has since deleted her account entirely.

According to a blog post from Dec. 19 titled “Help your compromised friends on Twitter or Facebook” written by Gary Warner, director of research in computer forensics at the University of Alabama-Birmingham, the spam occurs when a person visits a site that infects their computer with malware.

The malware obtains the user’s saved passwords, including social media passwords, in order to access sites to send spam. If a computer is still infected with malware, changing passwords will not work. Malware will just gather the new passwords and re-hack the account.

Warner recommends helping Facebook friends by reporting messages when they are received.

“The best thing to do is report the post to Facebook and then send them a message,” Warner said in his post.

Facebook’s has promised tol fix the problem without the account having to be deleted.

This is exactly what Racheal Dvorak asked her friends to do when her account was scamming them.

“Everyone that reads this please contact Facebook by reporting a problem,” she said in response to a stream of spamming posts that were sent to friends. “These hackers need to be brought to a halt. Thank you for helping better the Facebook friends and family neighborhood.

“I just don’t get the purpose of these hackers. I have recently heard of so many individuals who are having the same experience.”

After reporting her own profile, and a couple of friends doing the same, the postings finally stopped.

“I finally changed my password and deleted what I could,” she said. “I am hopeful. I have not had any problems or recent postings from these ‘bored people.’ The Facebook response was to check on the dashboard to see if the issue has been resolved. It wasn’t after two weeks.”

However, Dvorak said she has learned her lesson and vows to be more selective about who she friends and what links she clicks in the future.

“It is sometimes unavoidable when you care about your Facebook friends,” she said. “I just don’t understand people who want to do this to others.”

 

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