Recently a friend of mine was hacked and I received an email telling me she was in London and had her wallet stolen. She said she was okay and just needed money to help her get by……Riiiiight.
How do I know it was a hack? Well, I spoke to my friend the day before and she was still in the U.S. with no plans for vacations in front of her. On top of that, she knows better than to tell me she was robbed, she was okay, and needed money in one sentence in an email. Who does that?! If you're going to be “that guy” or “that girl” who breaks news like that in an email, you better be prepared for questions before I send you money. :p
A few years ago, I had someone hack a different friend's Facebook account and chat with me. He said the same kinds of things. He had been robbed but was okay and needed money. The difference being, this was being done over instant messenger. I took the opportunity to question the heck out of the impostor. I knew they were an imposter when they couldn't answer any personal questions that only my friend would know. I promptly texted my friend and reported the hack.
Be on the lookout for emails and messages like this because they are likely to be impostors trying to get your money. Like the Nigerian email scams, these scams pop up occasionally.
If you think you've been hacked:
- Change your password immediately.
- Inform your contacts/friends/people that you may have been hacked and warn them against clicking any links and let them know you are okay.
- Use a different password for websites.
That last one is important. More importantly is this: use a different password for your email account and your social networks. If you're hacked on a social network, at least they can't use the same password to get into your email.
Here are some helpful links in case you've been hacked on the following social networks. This is not an exhaustive list, so check your network/website and see how they handle this type of situation.
Remember. Trust but verify.
You Ought to Know: Change your password if you think you've been hacked.