Meta, formerly known as Facebook Inc., is going after individuals operating phishing accounts on Mark Zuckerberg’s social media platforms, Facebook, Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp.
Users of the social networking sites have been targeted by fraudsters seeking private financial information to gain access to funds owned by unsuspecting persons.
Phishing accounts are replica pages of websites that trick individuals to type in their login details, and Meta said it has recorded a surge in the activities on its various social media platforms.
This makes users of Facebook, Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp prospective victims, as there are over 39,000 websites impersonating these platforms’ login pages.
Zuckerberg’s company has decided to open a case against any individual caught in the act. One of the famous phishing scheme in Nigeria involved Obinwanne Okeke, known as Invictus Obi.
Obi featured on Forbes 30 Under 30 as a Nigerian entrepreneur, but has been convicted for fraud. His activity started from Facebook, before he started targeting other websites with his phishing scheme.
Commenting on Meta‘s clampdown on phishing accounts, Jessica Romero, Meta’s director of platform enforcement and litigation, wrote in a blog, “On these websites, people were prompted to enter their usernames and passwords, which Defendants (suspect) collected.”
Romero explained that, “As part of the attacks, Defendants used a relay service to redirect internet traffic to the phishing websites in a way that obscured their attack infrastructure. This enabled them to conceal the true location of the phishing websites, and the identities of their online hosting providers and the defendants.”
Meta is working to suspend thousands of URLs that hosted the phishing websites, and would share phishing URLs to enable other platforms take note of them.