An FB Message from PNP ACG posted by PSInsp June Abrazado:Good day everyone. Please read this. It will probably save you and people you care for in the future. After all our efforts to inform the public about cybercrimes, it seems like more and more people are still becoming victimized. It's not because they are illiterate, but because they are unaware of sophisticated online scams. So please help us spread online awareness to protect our loved ones from cyber criminals.
Basic online security consciousness can save us from a lot of trouble. We want to inform you as brief as possible about online scams that we are investigating. It will take a seminar to explain all of the modus operandi of cyber criminals but the bottom line is, when someone you know and trust online – even your closest family, relatives, friends, co-workers, etc. – starts to ask for money for any purpose (life and death emergency, basic needs, debts, etc), CALL them, or if possible, meet them personally.We have many cases of hacked Facebook or email accounts that solicited money from their friends list with very convincing cover stories that prompted the unsuspecting victims to send money right away, thinking they are helping a relative in dire need. Rule of the thumb: if it is about money or personal information being asked by anyone, DO NOT TRUST.Another case we are investigating is what we call "sextortion" that targets males in all ages. A beautiful sexy young girl will message you on Facebook or any social media site who will make it appear that she is so into you, establishing an instant interpersonal connection.
Soon, the conversation will start to get sexual in nature and she will start to send you nude pictures. Then, she will invite you to have a live video chat and will show herself performing sexual acts. Once you are hooked, she will encourage you to do the same with her and show your face and genitals on the webcam. What you don't know is that the chat video is not a live performance but a recorded video downloaded from porn sites. Mostly, the suspects behind the cam are also males who know how to use tools to show recorded videos on live chat conversations. Your sexual acts will be recorded and the never-ending extortion will start. He has already profiled your account and captured all of your friends list and the company you are working for or the school where you are studying and will threaten you to send the video to each and every one of them, forever ruining your life if you will not give them money. Previously, they only target foreigners but now even poor Filipinos are not spared. One victim of this modus sent more than a million pesos after being extorted over and over again by the suspects.To protect ourselves from cyber criminals, make sure that we protect our online accounts. It may be a hassle for us to take this into consideration but you can just imagine the faces of the victims who reported to our office that did not follow these simple precautions:
1. Use strong passwords (long with alpha-numeric-special characters combinations); weak passwords can be easily cracked by hackers. Hacked accounts are used in various types of cybercrimes and law enforcers will be looking for you. You can justify that your account was hacked but imagine the waste of time and effort on your part.
2. Do not click on links in emails and suspicious news trends on your timeline shared by friends (ex. death of Jackie Chan, etc). Malware may be embedded on those links that can remotely access your computer or device. If your friend sends you a link, call them to verify what is the content. If it is not important, immediately delete the email or remove from your timeline because your other friends may click on it.
3. Do not connect to unprotected public wifi and other untrusted networks. Hackers set up free wifi to extract vital information on your phone that can steal your identity.
4. Do not login to online accounts, especially online banking, on computer shops and other public/shared computers. They may have key loggers that can instantly record usernames and passwords.
5. If you are using credit or debit cards, make sure that it will never leave your eyesight even for a second once in the possession of tellers or gasoline boys during payments. Skimming is just a swipe away and will instantly capture credit card information that can cloned withdraw in other banks anywhere in the country.
6. When withdrawing from ATM machines, make sure there are security guards nearby. Make sure to inspect the cover and the keypad for any hidden video camera or keypad overlay that can record your pin. Also make sure that no one behind you is looking over your shoulder.
7. Cyberspace is based on trust. The default mindset for everything that you see from the internet should be that it is NOT TRUE, UNLESS VERIFIED PROPERLY.
8. THINK BEFORE YOU CLICK. Anything that you say or do online can be used against you in accordance with the law.Thank you for taking sometime to read this. This is a two-hour lecture that is presented on cyber awareness but Facebook is a thousand times more effective in spreading information. We understand if you don't want to share this kind of lengthy message on your timeline that will not get likes from your friends. But please help us spread the word to your family, friends, relatives, co-workers, and other people you do not want to get victimized. We do not want to see them in our office. :-)Please report incidents of Cybercrime at this number:(02)4141560Anti-Cybercrime Group (ACG)Philippine National Police "An ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of cure."