Call 4 Action: Falling victim to a hoax

If you got a notification that your Facebook account was hacked, you'll want to listen to this.

In recent days, we have heard of a hoax involving people's Facebook accounts being hacked or cloned, as well as people getting phone calls and text messages telling them that their computers have been hacked or their bank or cell phone accounts were suspended.

Sometimes it's hard to know if something is a hoax, but there are a few things you can do to help sort things out.

Most importantly, before you panic or follow a potential hoaxster's instructions, stop, ask questions and check things out further with legitimate sources.

Even if you get a text, email or notification on social media from what seems to be a friend do not trust it until you can check things out by calling your friend or contacting the business involved. Ask if they contacted you and how they got their information. 

We have heard from consumers who got duped from someone who was not a friend or got caught in something because a friend had not verified things before sharing a message. 

It might be a good idea to check with more than one source to verify things.

Although it is a good idea to check things out right away, sometimes you need to wait a day or two for the facts and fiction to be sorted out. If you panic too quickly without having all the facts you could do more harm than good. 

If you suspect that something is a hoax or a scam, alert others and provide good resources for people to check things out. Also, contact consumer agencies and any businesses that were being mentioned in the hoax so that they can warn others and put a stop to it. 

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