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Lads from Lagos target Facebook

Beware 'friends' bearing begging bowl

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The ever-resourceful Lads from Lagos have been hanging around Facebook hoping to extract a few bucks from the unwary, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.

Aussie Karina Wells was last Friday targeted via the social networking site by a Nigerian scammer claiming to be her friend Adrian. His message said he was stuck in Lagos and needed AU$500 for a ticket back to Oz. While the scammer used "relatively good English", the wheels came off his plan when Wells clocked his suspicious use of "cell" instead of "mobile phone".

Wells decided to play scambuster, and agreed to transfer the cash into the traditional Western Union account. She said: "I pretended that I would help, obtained all the details of where he was and forwarded them to both Facebook and the relevant authorities."

Adrian's log-in details probably fell to a password-snaffling email attachment or malware delivered from a bogus web page, the SMH notes. The paper elaborates that the victim receives a Facebook message from a friend with a subject such as "LOL. You've been catched on hidden cam, yo" or "Nice dancing! Shouldn't you be ashamed?"

The message contains a link to the offending "video" on a website which requires the download of a video player upgrade - actually the means by which the scammers obtain the target's password.

In September, security outfit WebSense warned users to keep an eye out for an alterative spam email line of attack, apparently sent from an @facebookmail.com addy and containing an invitation from Facebook to add a friend.

The company said: "The spammers included a zip attachment that purports to contain a picture in order to entice the recipient to double-click on it. The attached file is actually a Trojan horse." ®

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