Cybercriminal are making fake Facebook profiles to phish high-profile users: Report 

Cybercriminals pretending to be Facebook technical support workers were found targeting high-profile users to steal account credentials

April 26, 2023 01:24 pm | Updated June 09, 2023 05:11 pm IST

Cybercriminals created scam profiles to phish public figures, celebrities, businesses, sports teams, and individual users.

Cybercriminals created scam profiles to phish public figures, celebrities, businesses, sports teams, and individual users. | Photo Credit: AP

Cybercriminals created more than 3,200 scam profiles, most of them impersonating Meta employees’ profiles, to phish public figures, celebrities, businesses, sports teams, and individual users.

Scammers tricked victims by impersonating Meta’s technical team and requesting users to voluntarily share data on a phishing website or by sending their browser cookies to avoid their profiles being blocked, according to a blog post by cybersecurity firm Group-IB.

Cybercriminals lure potential victims with attention-grabbing posts with a sign indicating the post was “written” by Meta/Facebook support staff. They tag dozens of other pages in their posts, which also feature links to phishing websites, the post said.

Potential victims will see scam posts in either their newsfeeds, notifications or when they search for the name of an individual or company whose account has been tagged.

(For top technology news of the day, subscribe to our tech newsletter Today’s Cache)

The aim of the campaign, still ongoing and spanning through February and March 2023, is to gain access to the Facebook accounts of high-profile users and use Facebook log-in credentials to target the individual’s other social media and financial accounts.

A long scam

Upon gaining access to the login credentials, scammers may leverage the compromised accounts to harvest the credentials of other users, and in some instances, attackers were found to repurpose compromised profiles into phishing profiles to increase the scope of impact. Scammers were found to be using keywords like “account”, “retrieval”, or “recovery” to lure in more victims.

Attackers were also found to be using compromised profiles to demand ransom threatening to either delete the account or post inappropriate content if their demands were not met.

“The real danger in this phishing campaign lies in its potential reach. The number of victims can increase exponentially because the followers of a particular page – those who subscribed before the account was taken over by the scammers – are converted into potential victims following account takeover”, the post said.

The research by Group-IB identified more than 3,200 scam profiles, with more than 220 phishing sites mimicking official Meta and Facebook webpages to lure potential victims.

Top News Today

Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.