Cyber-Criminals Found a Home on Social Media Sites

By Karen A. Frenkel  |  Posted 02-17-2017 Email

The number of members in fraud-related groups on social media platforms has increased 70 percent in the past six months, according to a new study. It states that social media is a breeding ground for cyber-crime and is attracting fraudsters because these platforms are free, easy to use and offer global reach. According to RSA, which conducted the report, "2017 Global Fraud and Cybercrime Forecast," fraud posts first showed up on social media in 2011, when credit cards and e-commerce accounts began being published. "Initially residing in the hidden cracks in corners of social media, the level of fraud activity rapidly rose to flood the network with fraud offerings," says RSA's blog about the report, "and now, the vast majority of fraudsters operate largely in the open, and many even sell and trade stolen credit card data and hacking kits from their own personal profiles. There is a parallel world of fraud that is hiding in plain sight, existing side by side with the rest of us." Five hundred fraud-dedicated social media groups worldwide (220,000 members) were studied. More than 60 percent (133,000) were found on Facebook. Following are more highlights.

Karen A. Frenkel writes about technology and innovation and lives in New York City.


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