Recently, many Afghan Facebook users have reported to Khaama Press about cybercrimes in which fraudsters created fake Facebook profiles and used their names to ask their contacts for money and mobile recharge credit.
This has happened mainly with Afghans living abroad and most frequently sending money and mobile recharge balances to their family and friends in Afghanistan.
Shafiq Rafat wrote about the same issue and posted a screenshot of a fraudster on his Facebook who used a fake profile of him to ask for a recharge balance of 3,000 AFN from his Facebook friends, saying that “There is a patient in Afghanistan who need money for the operation; send me mobile credit to convert it into cash.”
He told his Facebook contacts to be alert, “Someone has made a fake account with my name and profile, requesting money from my friends and family. If this person messages you, do not answer, as it is not me. Please be aware of the scams that are going around.”
Shokrullah Alizada informed a similar fake profile; he wrote, “Fraudsters used a fake profile of mine to ask for 5000 AFN from my friends, saying that my family member is admitted to hospital in Afghanistan.”
He then wrote to his Facebook contacts friends, “A Facebook account has been created in my name, asking for money from all my friends; please do not believe it. It is a fake account and does not belong to me.”
In another instance, an Afghan residing in the USA received a similar message from the profile of his friend. He said, “I received a message from a close friend in Afghanistan that his son was admitted to a hospital and needed money. I was asked to transfer 4,000 AFN to the given mobile number. I believed it for a while, but then I called my friend for confirmation and discovered it was a fake Facebook profile.
In this case, two actions must be taken: first, report the fraudster and scam to Facebook immediately and request that the profile be blocked. On the other hand, make sure your Facebook account has the appropriate security settings enabled. Locking your details is the only way to keep your account secure. Facebook offers the option to lock your profile from being seen by other users.