My Facebook profile has been cloned! Now what?

By Kirstin Buick
28 May 2013

With the recent spate of cloned Facebook profiles doing the rounds, here’s what you can do to protect yourself and others.

It’s not difficult to do – someone could easily save your profile picture and use your name to create a duplicate account. Friends “you” invite will be none the wiser, thinking you’re simply having troubles with your account.

Once the cloner has access to your friends, they can pose as you, asking for money or personal information.

"A Facebook friend called me to find out why I had sent her a message asking for money online. I then discovered that my page had been duplicated,” Dinesh Ramrathan told online news site Times Live. "My friends were caught off-guard and accepted friend requests from the hacker, who then started sending requests for money."

Here’s what to do if your account has been cloned:

  1. Go to the duplicate account’s timeline.
  2. Click the Settings icon on the bottom right-hand side of the cover photo (the one that looks like a little wheel).
  3. Select Submit a Report.
  4. Choose the option “This person is impersonating someone”. You can also report someone impersonating one of your friends by selecting “Someone I know” after step 4, and type in the name of your friend.
  5. Follow the on-screen directions to complete the report.
  6. Post a status informing all your friends of what’s happened, asking them not to give personal details or money to “you”.

Your report will be submitted anonymously, so don’t worry – the scammer won’t know you’re onto them! You should be able to check the status of your report from your Account Settings (found on the far right of the topmost toolbar under the Settings icon.) From there, click on Support Dashboard to track what’s happened to the report.

-Kirstin Buick

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