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Paul Murphy / Eyewitness News
Email: pmurphy@wwltv.com | Twitter: @pmurphywwl

NEWORLEANS-- It's a cautionary tale for all social media users. Men are meeting women online who are then setting them up to be carjacked and robbed.

The latest case happened Monday night. New Orleans police say a man pulled up to the 2100 block of Danneel Street in the Central City neighborhood around 9 p.m. to visit a woman he met on a social media website.

He told police the woman got in his car, and then nine men approached him, four of whom were carrying guns. They took his 1998 Dodge Durango, wallet and cellphone.

'The female got out of the car and then several subjects entered the car and robbed him of his car,' said NOPD 6th District Commander Bob Bardy.

The crime follows a similar carjacking and robbery last week in the 2200 block of St. Anthony Street in the 7th Ward. Two weeks ago, also in Central City, another man was carjacked and robbed in the 1600 of Baronne Street by a woman he met online and several male accomplices.

'We have people on three different occasions, two in the 6th and one in the 5th district, going on two different media sites, 'Tagged' and 'Kik,' said Bardy. 'The kik thing is just a text messaging site. The Tagged site is a little more advanced where you can exchange pictures and stuff like that.'

FBI Supervisory Special Agent Drew Watts, who heads up the cyber intrusions section in New Orleans, said social media users are now more at risk than ever.

'Just because people say who they are, doesn't mean that's who they are,' said Watts. 'When you think you're talking to one person, they could be multiple individuals.'

According to the FBI, it's not enough to be cautious about who you meet online. You also have to be careful where you meet.

'If you're going to meet someone on social media, I would meet on your terms and dictate when you're going to meet, where you're going to meet and meet in an open area, so everybody sees what's going on, people see you, people see who you're with,' said Watts. 'I would advise taking a friend for this meet. If you're going to meet at night, meet where it's well lit.'

Watts also says be careful how much personal information you post online.

'If you're putting postings out there on a daily basis, you're establishing patterns, you're establishing what you're doing during the day and you're actually opening yourself up for the world to know what you're doing on a daily basis.'

Back on Daneel Street, neighbors say they didn't see Monday night's carjacking, but they agree sometimes the cyberspace can be more dangerous than real life.

'That's why I always say, they got to be really careful because people over here. They're too crazy,' said Horbin Bernna.

'I don't see why people do that, like go on the Internet and try to meet people because that could be a scam anyway,' said Arisha Hammond.

'You still got to be careful what you're doing on the internet,' said Jermaine Payton. 'There's a lot of phonies and fakes out here.'

The FBI also recommends you check your privacy settings to make sure you can pick who can see your posts.

Also, make sure the location finder on your cellphone isn't letting people know your exact location.

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