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Old October 31st, 2011, 04:02 PM
Total Noob Total Noob is offline
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Is this a Facebook scam or Facebook abuse scam?

I got a surprising regular email invite to be my wife's Facebook friend; she detests Facebook as much as I do.

I thought it was bizarre. She doesn't do much on the computer and practically nothing on the Internet, but she has a reasonably common name, so much so that we have a relative with the same exact name, and I thought it was the relative making the request. I didn't even think she had a Facebook account -- I don't -- but it turns out she does, one that she wanted to start to access some important information about a supplier. But in response to a deceitful welcome screen, then she unwittingly released her address book's password to Facebook (which does not make it clear that is what it is doing) before trying to quit and then remained dormant when she couldn't figure out how to quit.

Now I find out this is a big scam directly from Facebook, in the nature of ID theft phishing scam not too different than the Ivory Coast scams. It is also something that Facebook is inviting people to copy and cause havoc.

Here's the deal.

The emailed invitation was automated and generated by Facebook itself.

Her wall has no record of inviting me, and she wasn't on the system for months.

Facebook probably invited dozens of other people to be her friend by culling her entire addressbook, gained the password through deceit. That explains other invites I got from people I barely know and haven't seen or spoken to in years. Same thing happened to them.

Facebook lying, probably a false subject line in violation of CAN-Spam to get you to get onto their service with a bogus invitation.

So many people use Facebook that it can practically be assumed that any given person with an email address is a member. But even if they aren't, most people are probably delighted by invitations and will accept being a friend of someone they think they know reflexively before checking out the validity of the inviter's page to see if it really is that person or if that person really invited them. In fact, you have to do it that way.

Most people also won't dare write back directly to the inviter on a separate platform to confirm the invite. Declining or even questioning an offer of friendship seems totally rude, so no one is doing that. And the invitee may not have direct contact info to accomplish that anyway, which is the basic reason why Facebook is popular to begin with. Plus, you can't click back to see the inviter's page to be sure it is really them whether or not you are a member. You have to respond to an invitation blindly.

So basically, under our behavioral conventions, you are guilted into signing in or signing up for Facebook so as not to piss off whom you think is a friend, but is really a Facebook computer, whereupon you are immediately deceitfully propositioned by the complex jargon thick world of Facebook to turn over private info such as your email account password and address book to Facebook so it can provide that info to advertisers and schemers and Big Brother, whereupon the process is multiplied exponentially as more and more people are duped into giving private information in response to bogus invitations.


And so, the social network that preys on peoples' sociability and desire not to be rude and willingness to be guilted into joining things they really don't understand.

Now this is easily duplicated by con artists. It is easy, easy to find the name of the spouse or relative and the friends of any member and to invite them to turn over their private information on false pretenses, since you can't tell who really is doing the inviting once they set up a phony name duplicating a real friend or relative. Once an invitee accepts/joins, there's no way to find out who is really behind it, after the invitee stupidly exposes friends lists, email address books, and behavior info and personal pictures to some malicious waste of life or to Facebook that could be used to open credit card accounts, get passports, sell phony Viagra, or bogus Ivory Coast minister's bogus bank accounts.

F'ing Mark Zuckerberg would not respond in any way to my finding this stuff out, and that SOB should find himself in prison.

Thanks.

Post Script: since I wrote this, I got an invitation through LinkedIn to be the friend of someone named Frank Vega, whom I have never heard of, but may or may not have attended the same college as me -- 25 years later. The LinkedIn listing shows him with no current employment, and the supposedly previous employer never heard of him.

This is a scam on both their parts.

Last edited by Total Noob; October 31st, 2011 at 08:39 PM.
  #2  
Old October 31st, 2011, 09:49 PM
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smurfy smurfy is offline
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User naievity does not = scam.
Facebook, Linkedin, Google+ all have the same functionality to "imort potential friends" lists from your email account(s). All of them do the same thing - if that user does not already exist in their user database, it sends them an invite.

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Do you use Outlook, Apple Mail or another email application?
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Your rant is (again) misplaced.
  #3  
Old November 1st, 2011, 03:43 PM
Total Noob Total Noob is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smurfy View Post
User naievity does not = scam.
Facebook, Linkedin, Google+ all have the same functionality to "imort potential friends" lists from your email account(s). All of them do the same thing - if that user does not already exist in their user database, it sends them an invite.



Your rant is (again) misplaced.
No, it is your complacency that is misplaced.

It is an obvious, and probably illegal, fraud to send friend "invitations" in the name of persons who haven't done so.

In the law, signing someone else's name to a bogus request is called forgery or counterfeiting and perpetrators get hard time in prison measured in decades.

To dismiss criminal behavior of large public companies like Facebook and LinkedIn is a huge mistake -- the kind of mistake that leads to Madoff incidents and the like.
  #4  
Old November 1st, 2011, 08:54 PM
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smurfy smurfy is offline
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Rubbish.
Stop your ranting or expect a holiday from this board.
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