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TOP 10 HACKERS target

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Old 06-11-2017, 07:42 AM
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Default TOP 10 HACKERS target

HACKERS target small businesses on Facebook, and demand money to return access to their OWN accounts

  • Hackers are 'very opportunistic' when it comes to extortion
  • Businesses operate internationally and criminals are often hard to catch

A nail salon chain which also has an outlet in Delhi's Connaught Place has been forced to rethink its social media security after a hacker 'took over' its business page on Facebook and extorted money to return access.
The young owner of the store who has around 10,000 followers each on Facebook and Instagram was allegedly contacted by a caller who identified himself as a member of FB's security team.
On the pretext of securing her Facebook account, he hacked into her page and took complete control of it.

Hackers are targeting businesses on Facebook: stock photo

He then demanded money to give back access. She tried to log in but the username and password had changed along with her phone number and email address.
'There was no way of resetting the passwords,' she said.
Her frustration was compounded when thousands of followers suddenly unfollowed the page because of spamming by the offender.
According to cyber security experts, hackers are now targeting those who are dependent on social media for marketing their businesses and have significant online presence.
Kislay Choudhary, chairman of NGO Indian Cyber Army, said hackers are 'very opportunistic' when it comes to extortion.
Similarly, the Facebook account of another businessman who had over 20,000 followers on his page Bollywood Suits and Sarees was hacked and later deleted when he refused to pay the extortion money.

Criminals are extorting money from their victims

The victim told Mail Today that on May 29, he got a call from a man who claimed to be from the cyber security team of Facebook who said that he was checking the businessman's details so his business page could be verified.
'As I was getting a lot of spam recently and verified pages get more eyeballs, I decided to follow his instructions. The caller said that I have to share the onetime password to authenticate the page.
'As soon I gave my code, he said that my page was hacked and asked for `10,000 through Paytm,' the victim said, who wished to remain anonymous.
He claims that it took him several years to get that many followers on his page but they vanished overnight after the hacker was not paid.
The man is apprehensive that his page may be misused to spam his followers.

A senior Delhi Police officer said crimes related to social media are on the rise and most cases are about profile spoofing and account-hacking

'Social media account hacking is big business these days, since hackers can make a lot of money through compromised accounts.
'The amount of extortion depends on the number of likes one has on its page,' Choudhary said.
Prateek Shah, founder of the online marketing hub Digital Defynd, explains that small internet-based business take the issue of cyber security casually as they don't perceive themselves to be potential victims.
'Taking advantage of this very fact, many hackers and phishing companies catch entrepreneurs unawares and try to extort money or dupe them.
'These businesses operate internationally and criminals are often hard to catch,' Shah said.
He claims 'takeover' of accounts occurs because of weak passwords and the same passwords being used for different accounts.
A senior Delhi Police officer said crimes related to social media are on the rise and most cases are about profile spoofing and account-hacking.
But hacking of social media accounts of businesses is under-reported, mainly because if a compromise occurs, the victim sometimes does not know about it and, when he does find out, considers it embarrassing to inform anyone.

Small businesses are being hit by the hackers

Cyber security expert Sreedeep Ck Alavil said, 'Many black hat hackers are involved in illegal activities like carding (trafficking of credit card and bank account information) and selling hacked Facebook pages by using advanced spy applications.
Hackers demand money through fake profiles and through secured payment methods, including bitcoins. Hackers also openly sell hacked pages online and are ready to give rights against payment.
'Hackers have access to several Facebook pages. As new start-ups and other business pages need 'likes' for promotion, they directly buy it from hackers.
'So they get a set number of users without much effort,' Alavil said.
Advertising through hacked Facebook pages has become a fulltime business for many hackers.

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