When a long-lost friend contacts you via Facebook Messenger, you need to stop and make sure they really are your friend and not a scammer in disguise who hopes to get you to send them personal information or possibly money.
John Breyault with Fraud.org says the message starts something like this:
“Hi, it’s your uncle Bob. I just wanted to tell you there’s this new government grant that you can get more information about, just text me your number and we’ll talk to you about it."
The request to take the conversation off Facebook Messenger and move to texting is a new twist on an old scam, Breyault told me.
“They ask you to get off Facebook quickly and onto a messaging platform that Facebook doesn’t control. So, it could be a text message, it could be email, it may even be a phone call,” Breyault said.
If you get contacted by someone via Facebook Messenger, whether you know them or not, and they immediately want you to text or email them, and they ask for money or personal information – you’re dealing with a fraudster.
“Don’t respond, try to get in touch with the person (if you know them) to let them know that their account may have been compromised, and then you can block them or report it to Facebook for additional action,” Breyault said.
More Info: Use caution when talking to 'old friends’ on Facebook