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Facebook: Don't befriend a stranger!

Facebook users in Malaysia readily accept "friendship" requests from strangers, says criminologist and Malaysian Association of Certified Fraud Examiners president Datuk Akhbar Satar.

Malaysians should think twice about approving appeals for friendship from people they do not know, he says.

Many feel good when they suddenly become "popular" as indicated by the numerous applications.

They reveal a lot of themselves such as birth dates, addresses, telephone numbers and alluring photos to the so-called Facebook friends who now have access to these details which are found on the users' profile pages.

They are particularly vulnerable to all kinds of abuse.

Trusting Facebook users are everywhere.

A friend from the Philippines recently picked up a message on Facebook from a man who wanted to be her friend. He told her that he was attracted to her profile picture on Facebook and pestered her with messages for more than a month.

He began to wax lyrical about her beauty. And then he confessed that he was in love with her. It went on and on.

She soon discovered that it was all a scam and the scumbag was not what he had portrayed himself to be.

All he wanted was money and he instructed her to inform her bank to wire it to him.

"I am not that stupid," was her response. "How can I fall in love with a man I have not met."

She sighed with relief after she told him off.

But other women who believed the sweet nothings whispered by the con artists were not so lucky.

They lost all their savings in a Facebook drama full of lies and deception.

Their real friends tried to warn them, but they would not listen.

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