Computing > Security

So, is this a new Facebook SCAM?

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Stray Electron:
  My wife got a strange message a few days ago. It said that it came from "Sam" via Facebook and said "Hi Mary,  I heard from "Charles" that your son "David" needs help applying for disability. I can help you."   That's it, nothing else.

  First of all, "Sam" was the full name of someone that my wife worked with about 20 years ago but barely knew and in the message, the sender never reminds my wife of where they knew each other from or anything else. He just jumps straight into his pitch. Second, their industry had absolutely nothing to do with the medical field or with applying for disability. And "Sam" had no knowledge of those fields as far as my wife knows.  Next, they did have the right names and relationships for "Charles" and "David". But I have NEVER communicated with "Sam" and I didn't know the name until my wife told me, so "Sam's" pitch about hearing it from me was obviously a lie. Also to add that I NEVER, EVER post on Facebook! Finally, I'll add that my son is not trying to apply for disability so the whole story appears to be some kind of hoax.

  My wife said that the message came from Facebook but when I asked if it came through Facebook's message system or through her regular E-mail and said "Facebook" I never got a straight answer.

  Has anyone heard of this before? My thinking is that they got my wife's name from Facebook and then looked up her details including the name of her husband and son, probably from one the many People Finder websites and then send her this personally tailored Phishing E-mail and hoping to lure her into disclosing some personal information. The only thing that I don't understand is how they knew the name of the person that my wife once worked with.

ledtester:
I think it's possible the sender never intended for your wife to associate anything significant with the name "Sam". They have to use a name for themselves, so they just picked a common, run-of-the-mill name.

Stray Electron:
  No, this came from someone that gave their first and last names and it just seems very unlikely that it would be the same full name as someone that she once worked with. I also just used "Sam" as an example, I don't recall the actual name but it was something much less common than "Sam".

Mechatrommer:
the sam's account is hacked and the scammer is now pissing your wife, what else? this is known centuries old method. rule #1: dont attend to unwelcomed message no matter how too good to be true they are. rule #2: if you follow rule #1, you'll be safe.

Stray Electron:
   Don't worry, we're not about to reply to him. I'm just trying to figure out how the sender got enough information to personalize the message so that it doesn't sound like one of the Nigerian oil or you've won the Irish sweepstakes SCAMs.

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