LinkedIn Phishing Scams & The Rise of AI-Generated Photos Target Users
LinkedIn states it currently has more than 875 million members on its platform. January 1, 2023 through June 30, 2023 more than 21 million fake accounts have been detected and removed from LinkedIn, according to the company’s community report. According to LinkedIn, while 95.3% of those fake accounts were halted at registration by programmed defenses, there was close to a 28% increase in fake accounts caught as compared to the previous six-month period.
According to LinkedIn the proliferation of fake profiles has been heating up. Fake profiles are a problem for all users. The FBI has even commented that spam accounts on LinkedIn pose a threat and could be compromising your business results.
Fake profiles waste valuable time, open you up to scammers, clog up your newsfeed and even put your own profile and network at risk. With LinkedIn’s importance to many industries and businesses, understanding how to avoid fake profiles in your network is an important part of your success in networking and marketing.
As of 24 March 2022, LinkedIn had 810 million members across 200 countries. That’s impressive and indicates just how popular their platform is among professionals. It enables anyone in the world to see another’s professional background and contacts.
There is no doubt that profile fakes have been getting more sophisticated over the years. The advancement of AI-generated images means that the picture in the profile may not even be a real person. That smiling LinkedIn profile face might be an AI computer-generated fake.
I’ve personally spoken with users, and have read their LinkedIn comments, who continually receive invites to connect on LinkedIn from someone using the above profile photo depicting an Asian woman. This individual, and I say individual, because I can’t know for sure if it’s a man or a woman, uses a variety of different names and notes that they’re from different locations such as Beijing, Singapore, and Shanghai.
If, and when, you come across a fake LinkedIn profile you should report it to LinkedIn. Simply click Report/Block to file the report and the reason and help keep LinkedIn as a safe networking platform for you and your connections then block and delete the profile.
If you’re suspicious that the profile is false you can use a reverse Google image search or any number of companies who specialize in image searches.
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- The Professional Background Screening Association (PBSA) https://thepbsa.org/
- Southern California Fraud Investigators Association (SCFIA) https://scfia.org/
- World Association of Detectives (WAD) https://www.wad.net/
- California Association of Licensed Investigators (CALI) https://www.cali-pi.org/
- California Narcotics Officers’ Association (CNOA) – https://www.cnoa.org/
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Sunset Blvd. Investigations, Inc. provides seasoned and effective private investigation services for clients throughout the United States and Internationally. Our combined 80 years as law enforcement officers coupled with our private investigative experience distinguishes us from all other investigation businesses. If you’re in need of a private investigator, we’re here to assist you in any way we can.