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Meta says Facebook scams increasingly sophisticated

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The anti-cybercrime department holds a workshop on Facebook scams in March. ACCD

Meta says Facebook scams increasingly sophisticated

Meta – the US-based giant tech corporation that owns Instagram, Whatsapp and Facebook – urged Cambodia’s Facebook users to report scams to help them tackle online fraud in the Kingdom. It said online scammers have stepped up their activity and their scams have been getting smarter and more sophisticated.

Facebook’s public policy manager for Cambodia Heng Pheakdey made the call at a May 18 press conference, saying the participation of all users is needed to tackle online fraud.

To that end, he said, they have provided a tool for users to report any posts or activity to the company that they suspect may be fraudulent.

He added that Meta keeps all user reports confidential and does not allow anyone else to find out the name of the person who reports a suspicious post.

To report scams, Facebook users must click on the ellipses [...] to the right of each post and select “report post” and then select fraud or scam from the list of possible problems to report and click submit.

He said that in Cambodia, Facebook fraud had taken on many forms – such as job, loan and gambling scams.

“One type of gambling scam is lottery. You pay $5 or sometimes 10,000 riel to buy a lottery number and there are many prizes listed such as iPhones, computers, international vacations to other countries or just a cash payout. These lotteries are most likely scams,” he said.

Pheakdey added that other forms of fraud include e-commerce and romance scams and account hacking in order to exploit user information.

According to Meta’s press release, in order to equip Cambodian social media users with the knowledge of how to protect themselves from online frauds, it has launched a new anti-scamming campaign called “Let’s talk about online scams” to raise awareness and provide advice or simple tips on how to confidently tackle online fraud and foster a safer digital experience.

The press release said that throughout the video series, the audience can learn about the most important safety steps to avoid being scammed in both the digital and physical worlds.

The campaign calls on people to remember three simple steps – “Identify, Check, Report” – to remain vigilant in identifying, verifying and reporting financial fraudsters.

The press release said that so far the campaign has been hugely successful, with over 3.5 million people viewing the content and actively engaging by sharing the tips and ideas with their friends and families.

So Visothy, secretary of state at the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications, could not be reached for comment on May 18.

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