I was sitting at work nearing midnight, waiting for the scheduled downtime to start, when i received some Facebook chat messages purportedly from a Seattle friend.
[23:47] Scammer: Hey
[23:47] Scammer: are you there?
[23:47] ktula: what’s up?
[23:48] Scammer: Well I’m tired,confused and overall not too good at the moment..
[23:48] ktula: i am a little tired..downing a can of Monster now
[23:48] ktula: getting ready for the Cerner downtime at work
[23:48] Meebo Message: Scammer is offline
[23:49] Meebo Message: Scammer is online
[23:49] Scammer: I’m in some kind of deep mess right now and i need your help..
[23:49] ktula: what’s wrong?
[23:49] ktula: if it’s easier over the phone, u can call me at XXX-XXXX
[23:49] Scammer: I’m stranded in London in a very bad situation and i need help..
[23:50] ktula: london, ontario
[23:50] ktula: or london, england?
[23:50] Scammer: I got mugged at gun point last night in London,England by some hoodlusm
[23:50] Meebo Message: Scammer is offline
[23:50] Meebo Message: Scammer is online
[23:50] Scammer: all cash,credit cards and my cell phone was stolen..
I was getting kind of suspicious as soon as he mentioned that all his cash, credit cards and cell phone were stolen. I know my friend typically does not travel alone out of the country. So i asked:
[23:50] ktula: u there alone?
[23:51] Scammer: It was a very brutal experience for me but am glad i still have my life and passport..I need your help.
[23:51] ktula: how can i help
[23:51] ktula: ?
[23:51] Scammer: I’m here alone and still very scared and freak out right now..
[23:51] Meebo Message: Scammer is offline
[23:52] Meebo Message: Scammer is online
[23:52] Scammer: My return flight leaves in few hours time but i have a little problem paying off my bills at the hotel..
[23:52] Scammer: So i was wondering if you would be kind to loan me some few $$ to sort out the bills and i will have it refund back tomorrow
[23:52] Scammer: ???
At this point, i was almost certain that this was a scam. So i decided to ask whoever the person was the two things that only my friend and i know:
[23:53] ktula: is this some kind of facebook scam?
[23:53] ktula: if u r truly friend’s name…
[23:53] ktula: what is the thing u set up me build in my west seattle townhouse backyard for my bike?
[23:53] ktula: i mean
[23:54] ktula: what is the thing you helped me set up in my backyard for my bike?
[23:54] ktula: and
[23:54] ktula: what is our favorite sandwich place in seattle?
[23:54] Scammer: Ofcourse it me..If am not the one i won’t have ask you to send money to my name when we both know i will need some kind of ID with my face on it before i get the cash..
[23:55] Scammer: You are sending the money to my name just like i have it on my passport..
[23:55] ktula: hey..i m still waiting ..
After waiting for the response for a couple of minutes and not receiving one, i knew my friend’s FB account was hacked.
[23:57] ktula: guess u r not friend’s name
I immediately contacted my friend to notify him that his Facebook account had been hacked. Apparently Facebook scams very similar to this has been going on for a while. Here’s one and here’s another one.