Cisco Talos has uncovered as many as 74 Facebook hacker groups that managed to amass approximately 385,000 members, the company reports. Its research shows there is a large number of cybercriminals on social media operating right out in the open. Some of the groups escaped detection for as long as eight years before being shut down.
Their members offered a number of questionable or illegal services, including "the selling and trading of stolen bank/credit card information, the theft and sale of account credentials from a variety of sites, and email spamming tools and services." Most took payments in cryptocurrencies. However, some preferred to use a middleman, for instance, PayPal to make the transactions.
While it was enough to report some of the groups to have them taken down, Talos needed to contact Facebook’s security team to take down the rest. Nonetheless, as some are taken down, new groups are opened.
According to Talos, Facebook algorithms are currently not intelligent enough to differentiate between benign activities from illegal ones. “So far, Facebook has apparently relied on these communities to police themselves, which for obvious reasons, these criminal communities are reticent to do. As a consequence of this, a substantial number of cyber-scammers have continued to proliferate and profit from illegal activities.”