Saritha Jayasurya, Jayasurya
Saritha Jayasurya and JayasuryaFacebook

Malayalam actor Jayasurya has shared an important message with his followers after his wife Saritha was almost duped by an unknown caller and hacked into her Facebook page. She received a call from a person who claimed to be from the "cyber cell of Facebook". The actor shared her experience with a warning to all social media users.  

Saritha received a call from the number 89184 19048. Truecaller app showed it the number of 'cyber call center'. The person on the other side informed that her Facebook page had been hacked and asked to share the Google verification code she received on phone in order to protect the account.

Also read: Missed calls from Pakistan; Beware of Numbers with Country Code +92

"After she shared the code with him, he informed her that Rs 25,000 was pending and she must pay the sum to Facebook. He also directed her to credit it via Paytm. The call was disconnected after she felt suspicious. With in no time, she received a message saying that her FB account has been hacked and he demanded money to restore it. Her account was later recovered with the help our friend Jinu, who is working at Facebook. It is understood that many have fell prey to such fraud calls before [translated from Malayalam]," Jayasurya posted on Facebook.

There were several reports in the past two months in which people received such calls from the same number and many of them were also forced to pay the ransom. However, a good section of the social media users seem to be unaware of these fraudulent activities.

How does it work?

  • Have you shared your number on Facebook? Then chances are more that you receive a call from "the Hyderabad office of Facebook" which of course is a fraud move.
  • They might warn you about any content that violates the norms of Facebook or claim that your page or account has been hacked by someone. You will be asked to share the One Time Password (OTP) for verification purpose and once they get it, the hacker can easily access your social media account and will remove administrator/s from it.
  • They will threaten to delete the page and of leaking confidential information unless a ransom amount is paid to them via Paytm.
  • However, in some cases reported so far, many haven't recovered their account or page even after paying the amount the hackers demanded.

So how to protect your social media account from such frauds?

In future, never share the OTP you receive with anyone. It might be a ploy to hack your social media or bank accounts. No company professionals will contact you asking for your password or OTP. However, this warning is not just about the number 89184 19048. These hackers can easily call you from different numbers as well. So NEVER SHARE OTP or passwords with strangers.

Here's the Facebook post of Jayasurya: