Gardaí and the Garda National Economic Crime Bureau (GNECB) are warning the public about the latest social media-enabled fraud.

They say the goal is to deceive victims into parting with their money or to reveal access details to their bank accounts or credit cards.

In particular, they are highlighting bank customers targeted with advertisements on Facebook that encourage people to click on a link and enter login details.

The bank account can then be emptied within minutes by the fraudster.

Gardaí have described the common methods of the scam as the following:

  • The advertisement refers to internet banking and invites the customer to take a tour of the system.
  • The customer clicks on the link, to a ‘fake’ login page and enters their details which are now in the hands of the fraudster.
  • The fraudster takes control of the account and sets up a new ‘beneficiary’ on the account to whom money can be transferred.
  • The social media user will then receive an automated text from the bank with a code to authorise the addition of the ‘beneficiary’ to the account.
  • The customer will then enter the code into the ‘fake’ account which is captured by the fraudsters, or intercepted via malware on a computer, laptop or mobile phone.
  • One of the most recent fraud attempts reported invites social media users to take a tour of a banking system for a small reward, citing figures of €15 and €30.

Detective Chief Superintendent Lordan of the GNECB urges the public to never share banking details, pin numbers or passwords with unknown persons online.

Photo by from Pexels

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