Cyberwar And False Facebook Profiles

The popularity of Facebook as a social media outlet has brought cybercrime into a whole new level. Individuals are freely sharing their personal information and often, naively, not paying attention to the security that is needed to protect this data, this now allows perpetrators to not only access their information, but to create false identities for both individuals and companies.

South Africa has joined the many other countries that is suffering under the crushing blow of false Facebook profiles and identities. Although Facebook has stringent guidelines for these illegal practices, and has set up a cybercrime department, it is often discovered after the damage has been done and can be deemed ‘too little, too late’.


Cybercrime on Facebook can take the aspect of misrepresentation on a personal profile, posting the unique image and history that they have stolen to hack into the various ‘friends’ of the individual and gain access to their information. This data, linked with the general information found on the net allows hackers to put vast quantities of personal data together and then sell off to other companies and/or send SPAM email or test notifications.

From a company standpoint, a false profile can be one of the most damaging aspects. A corporation bases much of its standing on reputation and a fake profile can allow unsuspecting consumers and business partners to enter the fray of misrepresentation. This can permit the cybercrime perpetrator to extend e-com services and collect credit card information. The additional aspect that is just as destructive is the opportunity to create posts that does not reflect the opinions or values of the real company.

Sharon Knowles, CEO of DaVinci Forensics says:

Risk analysis for the security of a company’s reputation and data includes all variations of net exposure. DaVinci Forensics specialises in the examination of every aspect of infiltration with consistent diligence to maintain and avoid damage to a company’s financial or integrity condition.

As companies embrace social media as a method to enhance reputation and as a marketing vertical, there has been an uptick in the misuse and cybercrime. There is now a requirement to be proactive beyond the traditional defence, and instead take offensive actions that will assist in maintaining the safety and security of social media accounts.

Incorporating detailed monitoring, response and access analysis for Facebook as well as other social media outlets has become an integral part of the daily process to avoid security breaches from both external as well as internal methods. Alignment with a professional organisation that specialises in the security of company information as well as mitigate any damage has become part of the corporate IT world. Consistent audits of each and every venue, combined with comprehensive systems that alert for immediate action is the platform that to reduce and eliminate cybercrime attacks.


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