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Valley Woman Outsmarts Person Posing as Friends Online

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WESLACO – A Rio Grande Valley woman said people taking the identity of friends tried to get a hold of her personal information.

Rosa Chapa said she received a phony message this week. She said the message was from a friend she’s known for about 20 years.

“So, she tells me, ‘Hi, how are you?’… The picture of her and her husband were on the Facebook account,” she said.

Chapa said she continued the conversation since she hadn’t spoken to her friend in a while. But the exchange quickly took a turn. The friend told Chapa she had won $150,000.

“She says, ‘You’re on the list. I saw you on the list of winners,’” she said.

The person on the other end told her to click on a link they sent. But Chapa was hesitant and asked her friend to call her.

The person failed to call or respond. Chapa said she later threw out a trick of her own.

“I said, ‘Well, have your husband, Daniel – borrow the phone from him,’” she said.

But Daniel isn’t the name of her friend’s husband. It’s Richard.

Chapa said she tried messaging back but the information wouldn’t go through.

CHANNEL 5 NEWS web producer Beatriz Ramirez said it isn’t hard to hack into Facebook accounts.

“It’s easy, especially when people are not aware that they left their account open in other devices,” she said.

Ramirez said having strong passwords and deleting browsing data can help your accounts stay safe. Most importantly, she said people should verify who they’re talking to online.

Chapa said she never clicked on the questionable link. She’s thankful she did not fall for the phony message and urges others to be on alert. 

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