Link spammers go on social networking rampage
Spammers have found a fertile new marketplace on social networking sites such as Facebook and MySpace.
The 'wall' feature on Facebook is being abused by spammers to post deceptive messages, linking to spam sites such as online "pharmacy" shops. The tactic is similar to the long-standing link-spamming approach which involves posting misleading links to spamvertised sites on blogs and forums.
Facebook wall spamming is a recent variant on the theme. Spammers are using genuine users’ profiles to disseminate these messages and are buying or ‘renting’ these identities from online thieves, according to preliminary research by security appliance firm Fortinet.
It reckons miscreants obtained access to users' accounts using phishing attacks, deceptive messages that attempt to trick users into handing over their login credentials to hackers. A phishing worm was spotted spreading on Facebook earlier this year and both incidents may be related.
Fortinet has published an advisory on the attack (containing screenshots) here.
Such spam 2.0 lures are a relatively new phenomenon on Facebook, but they've been kicking around on MySpace for much longer.
Spambots on MySpam have recently begun using more sophisticated techniques, net security firm Websense reports. Malformed profiles are created in such a way that they hide all of the real MySpace profile areas. Surfers clicking on these expecting to view pictures or messages are instead met with content from spamvertised sites or worse.
"This technique can easily be adapted for malicious purposes, such as drive-by installers, MySpace phishing, and so forth," Websense researcher Ali Mesdaq warns.
"MySpace has a built-in security feature to catch form submissions to other sites. However, it seems to be reliant on a 'Submit' button being present to trigger the form. Having the warning there is a good, proactive security measure, but if the warning is bypassed, then it does no good." ®
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I'm a spammer.... bitch!
Maybe Mark Zuckerberg could *finally* find a way to make money from Facebook. Peddling porn and viagra isn't a long way to stretch from Beacon.
ISP side traffic sniffing..
As someone who's worked for telco's & ISPs before, I can guarantee you that snooping happens quite often... and most of the time it's just staff, and they (most likely) won't do anything you'd care about with the information they glean. Quite often it's just part of network performance testing or general diagnostics and sometimes curiosity.. but very rarely snooping on specific individuals (we *know* you look at porn, download copyrighted files content, send compromising emails, we don't need to prove it to ourselves)
I remember getting access through password sniffing to a few pron sites in my day (after ensuring that the site was fixed-fee, so as not to charge the customer more) - no biggie. In a reasonably well publicised screwup in Oz, a large mobile firm made undelivered MMSs accessible through a simple URL hack (luckily no personal details available along with it). I've decided that half the male population of Australia sends pictures of their dicks around, and that there aren't enough attractive women sending naked photos (but still a substantial number ..... and news for you, girls, guys DO forward your photos to their friends.. oh, the duplicates that I saw!) .. other interesting hobbies inside the workplace included searches on the SMS database for various words.. people are funny, when they think nobody's watching. :-) Statistically speaking, nobody is, of course. :-)