A security firm has suggested that Facebook has become a place for many exchanges and marketplaces that is used by cyber-thieves to sell and buy stolen goods.
Cisco researchers have found that 74 groups on the social media platform that trade stolen details of bank accounts and numbers of credit cards. The researchers found that these groups have a membership of 385,000 people.
The company said that it has closed down these groups for breaking the policies of financial fraud on the platform. Jaeson Schultz and Jon Munshaw from the security division of Cisco in a blog gave details saying that they were amazed that the fraud was happening so openly. They added that often the process of going after such thieves involves tracing the cyber criminals to servers that are hidden on dark web addresses instead of searching the cyber thieves on social media platforms. The duo said that these gangs who are operating on the platform concealed their activities. They exhibited behaviors that were shady to illegal. Some of them even advertised phishing, spamming and hacking services whereas others were seeking buyers for information of personal finance that included personal documents and numbers of credit cards, driving license and identity cards, they said.
Once the researchers began looking for such thieves, spammers and cyber criminals, Facebook’s algorithms were helpful as they suggested other such similar groups. The researchers said that the groups accepted payment in crypto currencies or through PayPal, some even used middlemen to get cash from buyers. They said that initially they tried so that these groups can be shut down using Facebook’s tools, but it proved ineffective. The researchers said that they linked with Facebook’s security team and gave them information regarding such activities. This helped the company to remove many of these groups, they said, but many of them are still active and they are working to close them down.