Twitter scams always prey on our fears and weaknesses, don’t they? And they often seem to arrive by way of direct message (DM).
We worry that something we may have said or done (and shouldn’t have) has gone viral, so those “what are you doing in this video” or “your [sic] famous now” DMs can send a chill, so you click them just in case. And bam! Account compromised.
Or we give in to the desire to see a public figure lose it and click a link promising to show Obama punching someone in the face. Compromised again.
This latest scam though is probably the most alluring: A “tip” to get in on the next big thing online before it hits mainstream. What could it be? They’re not telling, but you’ll get FILTHY RICH if you find out!
If you get this DM, beware:
Early TWITTER INVESTORS got FILTHY RICH! How YOU CAN GET RICH with the NEXT TWITTER Growth Story Now: [insert spammy link]
And like any good scam making its rounds online, you’ll see variations of this message – sometimes it will have Facebook switched out for Twitter, for example.
So what is this fantastic opportunity you’ll be offered if you click the link? We don’t know as we will not click it (see how that works?) because we know that once we DO click it, the following will happen:
- The creator of the link does a little happy dance (we imagine).
- This unscrupulous character takes control of your Twitter, sending more spam DMs and @mentions (yep, the exact one you clicked) to all of your followers, using your trusting relationship with them to reel them in.
Why are they doing this? Because many computers aren’t adequately protected and can then be infected with malware and your personal information can be stolen. Kind of like what happens with the “did you see this photo of you?” scam.
If you’ve already clicked the link, do the following:
- Check your connected apps in your settings and delete any that look suspicious.
- Change your password.
- Stop clicking questionable links.
Have you seen this or other scams making their way around Twitter?
(Lying image from Shutterstock)