Spammers Target Apple Fans on Facebook; Lures Them with ‘Free’ iPhone into Giving Hits to Rogue Sites

Written By Sam on 6 October 2010
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The social networking website Facebook is one of the favorite targets of spammers. We recently heard of scammers making millions by duping Facebook users with the lure of 10m free poker chips. This time it is Apple fans on Facebook that are on the spammers’ radar. IT security and control firm Sophos noticed a spate of messages, sent over the last weekend, to unassuming Facebook users. The messages to users claim that some of their friends have won free iPhones merely by participating in a scheme. Needless to say, the messages are actually sent using rogue applications that accesses user profiles and posts messages on the walls.

So, if you get a message on Facebook that reads:

“Just testing Facebook for iPhone out : P Received my free iPhone today, so happy lol… If anyone else wants one go Click here”

Or

“Anyone want my old phone?  Claimed my free iPhone today, so happy lol… If anyone else wants one go Click here”

Or

Click here for your FREE iPhone 4!

Or

Get A Free iPhone 3G (No Scam) It Really Works

Or

Get an iPhone free 100% real. NOT A SCAM!

you know what to do. Ignore, delete… do anything expect clicking and giving the spam credibility. For the curious few wanting to know what happens if one does click on the link, read on. It will ask if you want to ‘Allow’ the application to access your basic info. If you choose to ‘allow’ that as well, you will be redirected to a webpage. Congrats! You have just given the spammers what they wanted – the required web view to earn some more money. And that free iPhone? In your dreams!

With more and more people joining the social networking bandwagon, these sites have become a ready target for those looking to make a quick buck, by taking advantage of their wide reach and huge audience. Sophos has, therefore, called on Facebook users to be wary of such fraud messages and to “learn to think before they ‘like’ and ‘share’ suspicious pages” on Facebook. “Just because something appears on a friend’s wall, it doesn’t mean that it is from a reliable source,” Sophos added.

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