August 20, 2014

Better Business Bureau warns of online scam involving missing airplane

Iowans who use a popular social media website are being warned about a new scam that involves that missing passenger airliner, according to Jim Hegarty at the Better Business Bureau. Hegarty says, “If you’re on Facebook and a post catches your attention with the headline, ‘Video of Malaysia 370 plane found in Bermuda Triangle, Passengers Alive,’ it’s designed to trick you into clicking on the link that would lead you to the video that doesn’t exist or it’s a phony one.”

He says it would be a mistake to click on that link, even if it appears to be from a friend you trust. “A pop-up may appear, prompting you to update your video player but when you click on that, what you’re doing is downloading malware into your computer that can do all sorts of bad things,” he says. That malware may record your keystrokes to obtain passwords and access to your personal financial information.

Hegarty says while you can trust your friends, you many not be able to trust their Facebook accounts as they can be hacked. “Don’t click on these because lots of times people’s Facebook can get highjacked and folks will send you things that appear to be coming from them when in fact they’re coming from scammers,” Hegarty says. “These guys are trying to do whatever they can to get unsuspecting consumers to click on these links.”

Hegarty says stay away from links to video footage that claims to be “exclusive,” and he suggests you just hover your cursor over the link to see if it’s really going to the address it claims.