Thursday, January 15, 2009

Update: Heinous Facebook Identity Theft

Today I'm in Daytona, FL at Summer Project Directors Conference with my friend and colleague Geoff Freeman. He discovered that someone hacked into his Facebook account, changed his password and then claimed to all of his Facebook friends that he is stuck in London with no wallet or money and needs money sent to him.

Geoff is sitting right next to me right now as this identity thief started chatting with me on me on Facebook.

He claims that I should send money to help him through Western Union to:

Geoff Freeman
32 Kentish Town Road, Kentish Town,
London, NW5 2AE United Kingdom

Can someone, somewhere bring this person to justice?

Oh, and make sure your Facebook password is strong.


Update:

"Geoff" just went offline. The real Geoff and I are pretty sure this person is an accomplice.


Another Update:

Here's how my chat with "Geoff" ended...

Apparently he was the done...

Geoff

u there?

all i need now to get on a plane back home is 850

can u loan me that?

8:52pmRyan

how about I send you an even $1000

8:52pmGeoff

ok

do u know any western union agent around u?

or do u have any idea about western union?

8:55pmRyan

yes actually my brother is a western union agent

I'll call him right now. He's actually a district manager so he'll have lots of authority to take care of you

8:57pmGeoff

so how are u going to do it now

8:57pmRyan

I'm going to call him right now

He can contact someone there in London I'm sure

8:58pmGeoff

ok

8:58pmRyan

he will make sure the money gets to you

when should I tell him that you will be there to pick it up?

8:59pmGeoff

just tell him to send the money and i will pick it up here with my passport

are u calling your brother now?

9:02pmRyan

yes

9:03pmGeoff

so how is it going?

how soon will i get it?

9:04pmRyan

he said he needs your passport number

if you don't have a wallet or any other id

9:10pmGeoff

U ARE A FOOL

IDIOT

9:12pmGeoff

IF U TALK TO ME AGAIN...I WILL GET YOUR ACCOUNT HACKED

TRUST ME...I'M THE DONE

FOOL

IDIOT


Final Update:

Last night, after more than 48 hours Facebook finally responded to Geoff and reset his password. He had no response for two days while his account and identity was being used to nefariously solicit money. It is troubling that Facebook is so slow to respond. It makes me question whether Facebook is a good idea.

5 comments:

Claire said...

hey ryan... thanks for the heads up. i just started talking to fake geoff about 30 minutes ago. that was actually the first thing that occurred to me but it's good to know for sure.

Lane Chaplin said...

I linked to this on my Facebook page. Thanks for letting us know.

Anonymous said...

Hey-

I found your blog my searching Google for a solution and more information about my own hacking episode. I've also been hacked by someone who changed my password and email and is trying to extort money from my friends so I can "return home from London". It seems that there have been several people that have been affected and this hacker is continuing to use my account! I contacted abuse@facebook.com and privacy@facebook.com over the last 24 hours and haven't heard anything back...would you mind letting me know what your friend did to get Facebook's attention? And whether or not he had a secret question set up? Thanks!

Ryan said...

Geoff is traveling today so I haven't heard more from him after the last update. Hopefully Facebook will respond at least within 48 hours to you, Anonymous.

Ian said...

Another similar story...

http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/01/20/latest-facebook-scam-phishers-hit-up-friends-for-cash/

Interesting Stuff