Beware Cyber security experts and law enforcement alert about social scam

May 19, 2024
1 min read


In Decorah, Iowa, cyber security experts and law enforcement warn about a social media scam targeting people’s emotions. Scammers post a picture of a young boy claiming he is in police care and ask users to share the post. Once shared, scammers edit the post to include a link that can expose personal data. Experts advise seeking a second opinion before engaging in any online transactions.

Article Summary:

In Decorah, Iowa, cyber security experts and law enforcement are cautioning the public about the latest social media scam that preys on people’s emotions. The scam involves a post in a Facebook group showing a disturbing image of a young boy covered in cuts and bruises, claiming he is in police care and his parents have not been found. The post requests users to “bump” or share it to help locate the boy’s family.

Brandon Potter from cybersecurity company ProCircular explains that scammers take advantage of people’s empathy and willingness to help. They exploit these emotions to manipulate users into sharing the post, which they can later alter to include a malicious link that can compromise personal data. Potter emphasizes the importance of being cautious online and verifying information before engaging with such posts.

Winneshiek County law enforcement, led by Sheriff Dan Marx, are actively working to protect people from falling victim to these scams. However, Marx acknowledges that scammers are becoming increasingly sophisticated, making it challenging to detect and prevent such fraudulent activities. He advises individuals to seek a second opinion before taking any action online, especially in transactions or relationships initiated through social media.

As scams on social media continue to evolve, it’s crucial for users to stay vigilant, verify information, and exercise caution when interacting with posts that evoke strong emotions. By staying informed and adopting a skeptical mindset, individuals can protect themselves from falling prey to cyber threats.

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