Scammers Make Millions by Duping Facebook Users With Lure of 10M Free Poker Chips

Written By Sam on 18 September 2010
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If you are a Facebook user, who has been promised 10m free Texas Hold’em poker chips for just participating in a survey, beware! For as security researchers from GFI Sunbelt would agree, there is free cheese only in a mousetrap. And if there’s any money made through such surveys, it goes to the spammers’/scammers’ kitty. So, what do you get? Duped, for falling prey to the lure of free poker chips.

It is observed that “the promised chips are not real poker chips, but virtual currency for the Texas HoldEm Poker game on Facebook, which is developed and run by Zynga”. The blog also informed that the spam message reads like, “Zynga just gave me 10 million poker chips for Texas Hold’em Poker, for FREE! Get yours now: [url] Limited time offer!”.

The unassuming user soon learns that there are a few formalities to complete first, such as ‘Liking’ and ‘Sharing’ the page, for instance, which in turn ensures widespread promotion for what actually is a cheap marketing con. Finally, the user is prompted to post the previously-mentioned spam message in five different places on Facebook. If a user goes all the way to find out what lies in store, this is what they will find – a bid to complete one of several surveys in order to “help keep this quality content available”. Most of these surveys are aimed at getting unassuming users to sign up for premium-rate services. Meanwhile, the “scammers earn money through affiliate marketing schemes for directing traffic to them”.

So, is Zynga involved in this gimmick? No. The scammers simply abuse the company’s name, logo and reputation just as they try to abuse your access to your friends’ walls on Facebook to promote a rogue page.

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