Royal Birth Triggers Social Media Scams - 8NEWS - WRIC | News Where You Live

Royal Birth Triggers Social Media Scams

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With the new royal baby making his debut this week, the Better Business Bureau warns people that scammers could be attempting to take advantage of the public's eagerness to see photos of the newborn prince.

"Any time there's a major news event, we find that scammers are just looking for that opportunity," says Senior Vice President  Barbara Homiller.

Homiller says a new scam is popping up on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter along with your email. All promising pictures and video of the just born royal baby.

"What you would normally see on Facebook is a posting from a friend saying, ‘I have exclusive video of the new prince' and you can click here to see it.  You would be taken to a third party website," Homiller says.

Those third party websites are a red flag right away. Instead of seeing pictures of Prince William, Duchess Kate and their little one, you get a message on your screen asking you to download a video player.

"Instead of up uploading an update to their video player, they're downloading a virus on their computer," Homiller says. "A virus that's designed to capture their personal information -- including banking information, and send it back to the scammer."

She also says when searching online, be aware of keywords such as "exclusive," "sensational," or shocking." Those words are meant to get your attention and not always in the best way.

So far, there's no word on the amount of people that have been scammed because many times you won't know when a virus has been downloaded until it's too late. You can protect yourself by running a virus scanning program.


If you have been targeted -- notify the Better Business Bureau at (804) 648-0016.

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