It seems that no disaster or world-wide event can occur without scammers taking advantage of the situation, so it’s no surprise that they’re targeting people who are curious about the whereabouts of the Malaysian Flight 370, as reported by CBS.

How does the scam work?

The Malaysian Flight 370 scam has shown up on both Facebook and Twitter. Basically the users will see a link or video with a caption claiming to have shocking footage of MH370 or shocking video of the plane in the Bermuda Triangle. Once the user clicks on the link, they are taken to a website posing as a news site and encouraged to share the story. After the user has logged into their Facebook or Twitter using the phony website, they’re required to fill out a survey before they’re connected to the video. The information that the user enters into the survey will then be used by the thieves and sold to other scammers.

Malaysian Flight 370 scam

How to protect yourself from the Malaysian Airlines 370 scam

Scams similar to the Malaysian Airlines 370 scam pop up on social media sites all the time, so this particular scam is nothing new. By following the tips detailed below you can ensure the safety of your personal information.

1. Don’t click on any posts claiming to have shocking footage of flight MH370: If you see any posts, tweets or links claiming to have never before seen or shocking footage of the missing airplane, then you should make sure you don’t click on it because chances are, it’s a scam. If the story seems ridiculous, such as “MH370 found at the Bermuda Triangle,” then it’s an obvious scam and you should avoid clicking on it. In the instance that you accidentally click on a spam post, tweet or link, it’s important that you do not enter any personal information and close the website immediately. Also remember that reputable news sites do not require you to share the story or enter any information to access a news story.

2. Report spam: Be sure to report any posts, tweets or links that claim to have shocking footage of the flight to the social networking site. To report the spam on Twitter select the “More” option at the bottom right of the tweet, and select “Report Tweet.”

Malaysian Flight 370 scam

To report the spam on Facebook, click on the down arrow on the top right of the post, then select “Report/Mark as Spam” or “This is Spam.” Note that the options will differ depending on if you’re looking at a personal or business post.

Malaysian Flight 370 Scam

3. Check the URL before you enter any information: This is a rule that you should follow anytime you enter personal information into a website. Always remember to double check the URL and verify that it’s the site you’re trying to access. Scammers are getting very good at copying the look of a legitimate website to trick you into sharing a spam post on Facebook or enter your personal information into a “survey.” If the post, tweet or link promised to take you to a certain news site, then make sure the URL reflects that source. For example if the post says “CNN UPDATE: Malaysian Flight 370 Found in Texas,” then you should be taken to a URL that starts with www.cnn.com. Any other URL means that you’re not on the correct website, and are possibly falling for a scam.

4. Use Internet security software: In most cases an Internet security software suite will alert you in the event that you’re about to enter an unsafe site, so it’s a wise tool to use, especially if you worry that you may fall victim to phishing scams or scams similar to the Malaysian Flight scam. Besides warning you of potentially dangerous websites, Internet security software also protects your computer and personal information from viruses and other malware designed to get your personal information.

Visit our identity theft protection blog to get more tips on protecting your identity in every aspect of your life and find the best service for your needs by reading our Internet security software reviews.