14 Nov 2011

Men more likely to fall for 'sexy stranger' Facebook scams

Men have been shown to be more gullible when it comes to falling for internet security threats on social media websites from "sexy strangers," according to a survey by an antivirus software company.

The study, surveying 1,649 men and women across the United States and United Kingdom shows that men are more likely to accept friend requests from strangers, leave their account open for all to view and fail to read a website's privacy policies. About 64.2 percent of women always reject friendship requests from strangers, when only 55.4 percent of men reject requests from people they don't know online.

A quarter of all men allow strangers to view and search for their accounts, in comparison with 16 percent of women, the survey said.

Time Magazine's website said red flags to look for when accepting a Facebook friendship include looking to see if the profile has been created in the past few days, if the information is incomplete, if there are no friends in common and if none of the information matches. Taking these steps to avoid strange accounts in concert with using antivirus software is a good way to keep computers healthy.