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Jad Chambers Blog

A New Facebook Scam

Actually it's not new.  But that's nothing new either; many scams, spyware, viruses, ect. online are just new versions of old ones or different variations.  The latest scam is another facebook "clickjacking" scheme.  Somewhere on your or a friend's feed you'll see a message saying something like "You can't watch this video for more than 15 seconds" or "90% of people can't watch this video for more than 15 seconds."  Then there is an embedded video or a link to a video.  It's usually just a kind of gross video (like lancing a boil, or a bad bone break, that sort of thing.)  But there's also things like an age verification with your date of birth, and question fields that ask you things.  Simple things like the state that you live in, county or city you live in.  Zip code where you live.  YOUR STREET ADDRESS AND TELEPHONE NUMBER.

Yeah, this isn't simple anymore, they are phishing for your personal information.  And they are getting personal information from people in exchange for watching someone lance a boil to see pus come out?  How stupid is that?  Plus, this is the internet.  There are plenty of places you can go to see "gross out" videos without picking up malware or falling for phishing scams.  Youtube or Ebaum's World will have you covered if that's your thing (although Ebaum's has been known to have spyware issues from time to time, which is why I won't link it.) 

And if losing personal information isn't bad enough, the information can be used to hack your facebook account, ensuring that all of your facebook friends get hit with the same clickjacking scam.  That's a quick way to get un-friended.

Likewise though, you can't be too lenient on facebook friends who don't follow basic security precautions and wind up getting hacked.  In that case the hackers can see your private profile and can post to your wall.  And that's unacceptable.  And if someone is mad or upset that you un-friended them, just tell them that you are still their friend.  But it's just an online safety precaution that you have to take to protect yourself.  Once they resolve their security issues, you can friend them again.

I've said I'm not a fan of social networking, but I can see the allure and usefulness of facebook and twitter.  But ever the increasing spiderweb of social circles on sites like facebook is a tailor made way for scammers to spread their malware.  So use caution.

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11/17/2011 8:46AM
A New Facebook Scam
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