Ireland AM presenter Karen Koster revealed that she was a victim of a social media scam and has warned fans to stay alert.
The star said that she felt she was ‘savvy’ when it comes to online security and her experience shows how easy it can be to let you guard down.
The scam happened when Koster replied to a WhatsApp message from her colleague asking for a one-time passcode that had been sent to her phone by mistake.
After she provided the code, she realised that she had been taken in by the fraudsters.
They had hacked into her account and had access to her contacts and pictures and other media.
She told RSVP: “I was here and in an ad break I got a text from one of our producers going, ‘I am after getting a verification code sent to your phone by mistake, will you text it back to me? It should be in your text messages’. And this was a WhatsApp from her.
“It seemed so legitimate. It was coming up to Christmas and I thought she could have been online shopping and copied and pasted my number because I was the last person she texted.”
Koster worried that her private photos, including some of her children, might be published online.
She told Ireland AM: “Certainly you don’t want pictures of your kids all over the internet.
“It was a means for them to get a verification code for your WhatsApp so they could get into your contacts. I never thought I’d be one to fall for these things. It is so easily done.”
It is vital to stay on your toes when giving out sensitive information. If someone asks you to pass on a code or password via a message or text, ask yourself why they haven’t phoned you so you can hear their voice.
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