Category Archives: facebook

Keeping kids safe in the digital world: a primer for anxious parents

Keep your kids safe from digital threats!Like most things in life, starting early gives you an advantage, even when it comes to cybersecurity. Today’s...

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Unprotected database exposed a scam targeting 100K+ Facebook accounts

Researchers discovered an ElasticSearch database exposed online that contained data for over 100000 compromised Facebook accounts.

Researchers at vpnMentor discovered an ElasticSearch database exposed online that contained an archive of over 100.000 compromised Facebook accounts. The archive was used by crooks as part of a global hacking campaign against users of the social network.

“We discovered the scam via an unsecured database used by the fraudsters to store private data belonging to 100,000s of their victims.” reads the analysis published vpnMentor.

“The people running the scam were tricking Facebook users into providing login credentials for their private accounts via a tool pretending to reveal who was visiting their profiles.”

Facebook scam

The fraudsters used the stolen login credentials to access Facebook accounts and share spam comments on posts. The comments all eventually led to a fake Bitcoin trading platform used to scam people out of ‘deposits’ of at least €250.

“By including links to fake news websites, the fraudsters hoped to bypass and confuse Facebook’s fraud and bot detection tools,” said researchers. “If the hacked accounts only posted the same links to a Bitcoin scam over and over, they’d quickly be blocked by the social network.”

Fraudsters were tricking Facebook users into providing their account login credentials by providing a tool that pretended to reveal who was visiting their profiles. Personally Identifiable Information (PII) data included in the archive also included emails, names, and phone numbers for the victims who’d registered at a fraudulent Bitcoin site also run by the fraudsters. Experts also discovered tens of domains employed by the fraudsters in this scam campaign.

The archive also included technical information about how the cybercriminals had automated their processes.

It is not clear if the exposed data was accessed or leaked by other third parties.

The size of the archive was over 5.5 GB and contained a total of 13,521,774, it remained open between June and September of this year. According to the experts at least 100,000 Facebook users were exposed in the Facebook scam.

vpnMentor pointed out Facebook accounts were not hacked, the exposed database belonged to a third party using it to process account login credentials obtained illegally via a group of scam websites targeting Facebook users

The researchers notified the social network of their discovery, they also confirmed that the database was live and real.

The day after the discovery of the unsecured database, it was likely targeted by a Meow attack, which wiped its data, them the database went offline. Since July, experts observed dozens of unsecured Elasticsearch and MongoDB instances exposed online that were inexplicably wiped by threat actors as part of a campaign tracked as Meow attack.

“If you’re a Facebook user and think you’ve been a victim of this fraud, change your login credentials immediately.” concludes the report.

“Furthermore, if you reused your Facebook password on any other accounts, change it immediately to protect them from hacking. We recommend using a password generator to create unique, strong passwords for every private account you have, and changing them periodically.”

Below the investigation timeline:

  • Database discovered: 21st September, 2020
  • Date Facebook contacted: 21st September, 2020
  • Database server closed*: 22nd September, 2020

Pierluigi Paganini

(SecurityAffairs – hacking, scam)

The post Unprotected database exposed a scam targeting 100K+ Facebook accounts appeared first on Security Affairs.

Can You Decode Your Teen’s Texting Language?

texting slang

It’s hard to believe, right, parents? In just a blink or two, you went from being the teenager dropping cool phrases like “rad” and “gnarly” to monitoring a teenager texting words like “lowkey,” “IRL” and “CD9” into her smartphone non-stop.*

For generations, teens have been crafting terms to differentiate themselves from other age groups. The difference today is that smartphone texting has multiplied the scope of that code to include words, emojis, numbers, and hashtags.

The times have changed, fo’ sho.’

Digital Deciphering

You don’t have to speak your child’s language (please don’t). However, with new terms and risks emerging online each day, it’s a good idea to at least understand what they are saying.

Since kids have been spending more time online due to the pandemic, we thought we might discover a few new and interesting terms. We were right. We found stories of teens referring to the Coronavirus as “Miss Rona” and “Rona,” and abbreviating quarantine to “Quar.” A “Corona Bae” is the person you would only plan to date during a lockdown.

Much of the coded language kids use is meant to be funny, sarcastic, or a quick abbreviation. However, there are times when a text exchange can slip into risky territory. Seemingly harmless, text exchanges can spark consequences such as bullying, sextortion, privacy violations, and emotional or physical harm.

Stay Connected

To help kids avoid dangerous digital situations, we recommend three things: 1) Talk early and often with your kids about digital risk and behavior expectations, 2) Explore and use parental monitoring software, and 3) Know your child’s friends and communities online and in real life.

Note: Context is everything. Many of these terms are used in jest or as casual banter. Be sure to understand the context in which a word is used.

A Few Terms You May See **

Flex. This term means showing off. For example, “Look at her trying to flex with her new car.”

Crashy. Description of a person who is thought to be both crazy and trashy.

Clap back. A comeback filled with attitude.

Cringey. Another word for embarrassing.

Hop off. Mind your own business.

Spill tea or Kiki. Dishing gossip.

Sip tea. Listening to gossip.

Salty. Mad, angry, jealous, bitter, upset, or irritated.

“She gave me a salty look in class.”

Extra. Over the top or unnecessarily dramatic.

Left on read. Not replying to someone’s message.

Ghosting. Ending a friendship or relationship online with no explanation.

Neglext. Abandon someone in the middle of a text conversation.

Ok, Boomer. Dismissing someone who is not up to date enough.

(Throw) shade. Insult or trash talk discreetly.

Receipts. Getting digital proof, usually in the form of screenshots.

THOT. Acronym for That H__ Over There.

Thirsty. A term describing a person as desperate or needy. “Look at her staring at him — she’s so thirsty.”

Thirst trap. A sexy photograph or message posted on social media.

Dis. Short for showing blatant disrespect.

Preeing. A word that describes stalking or being stalked on Facebook.

Basic. Referring to a person as mainstream, nothing special. Usually used in a negative connotation.

Chasing Clout. A negative term describing someone trying too hard to get followers on social media.

9, CD9, or Code9, PAW, POS. Parents are around, over the shoulder.

99. All clear, the parents are gone. Safe to resume texting or planning.

KPC. Keeping parents clueless.

Cheddar, Cheese, or Bread. These are all terms that mean money.

Cap. Means to lie as in “she’s capping.” Sending the baseball cap emoji expresses the same feeling. No capping means “I’m not lying.”

Hundo P. Term that is short for “hundred percent;” absolutely, for sure.

Woke. Aware of and outspoken on current on political and social issues.

And I oop. Lighthearted term to describe a silly mistake.

Big oof. A slightly bigger mistake.

Yeet. An expression of excitement. For example, “He kissed me. Yeeeet!”

Retweet. Instead of saying, “yes, I agree,” you say, “retweet.”

Canceled. Absurd or foolish behavior is “canceled.” For example, “He was too negative on our date, so I canceled him.”

Slap or Snatched. Terms that mean fashionable or on point. For instance, “Those shoes are slap” or “You look snatched.”

And just for fun, here’s a laugh out loud video from comedian Seth Meyer’s on teen Coronavirus slang you’ll enjoy on YouTube.

* lowkey (a feeling you want to keep secret), IRL (In Real Life), CD9 also Code9 (Adult Alert used to hide secretive activity). ** Terms collected from various sources, including,,, and from tweets and posts from teens online.

The post Can You Decode Your Teen’s Texting Language? appeared first on McAfee Blogs.