Facebook scam takes advantage of public profile settings - WNEM TV 5

Facebook scam takes advantage of public profile settings

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Jodi Zube is a Facebook user. She couldn't believe she was getting bogus calls from complete strangers.

"It was just horrible," Zube said.

Turns out the perpetrators got her phone number through her Facebook account.

"They were calling at all hours of the night. They were calling all during the day, threatening my husband with bench warrants," Zube said.

How can you prevent this from happening to you? We asked our experts here at wnem.com for answers.

Brianna Owczarzak is the managing editor for our website, WNEM.com.

"I think what a lot of people don't realize if you log into Facebook with your phone using the Facebook app the very first time you use it asks if you want to sync your phonebook to your Facebook account,” Owczarzak  said. “And a lot of people just click yes without thinking about it. And then their phone number is attached to their Facebook account."

She gave us a step by step approach to take our phone number offline.

  • In the top left corner of your Facebook page, click the icon that looks like an arrow pointing down
  • Select Settings
  • On the left hand side of your screen, select Mobile

"You just select remove if you don't want it linked to your account," Owczarzak said.

If you want to keep your contacts synched with your phone number, you can change the setting on your profile to prevent others from seeing your phone number.

  • On your profile, click the About tab
  • The first screen will say Overview. On the left hand side, click Contact and Basic Info.
  • Scroll over your Mobile Phones and select edit, which will appear on the right hand side.
  • Under your phone number, there will be a privacy icon. To prevent all people from seeing your phone number, select “Only Me.” That should be the fourth option.

Zube said she plans to take more precautions on-line to keep scammers away.

"To have all of that information out there for somebody to scam me that just scares the daylights out of me," Zube said.

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