Feeds

Dodgy Facebook pages used to power 'spam a friend' joke scam

No laughing matter

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

Dubious Facebook pages host rogue Javascript code that creates a means for miscreants to spam people on a user’s friends list, security researchers warn.

Chris Boyd (aka Paperghost), a security researcher at Sunbelt software, explains that the ruse relies on duping prospective marks into completing surveys. Users who complete these studies would inadvertently grant access to their friends list by following instructions on misleading dialogue boxes.

Baits being used in the ruse offer supposed access to the "world's funniest joke", among other ruses. Users are taken through a series of steps that results in them copying and then pasting JavaScript code into their address bar.

Once this happens a “suggest this to your friends” dialogue box will automatically appear briefly on userss' screens before it is replaced by a captcha prompt. Users who follow through will post a spamlink on the news feed of anybody who happens to be their friend.

This spamvertised link, in turn, promotes a fake internet survey aimed at flogging "expensive ringtones, and fake iPod offers, as explained in a blog post (containing screenshots illustrating the scam by Boyd here.

A depressing total of over 600,000 links to four pages containing the malicious JavaScript reveals that numerous users have been exposed, if not already taken in, by the scam.

Sunbelt has reported the dodgy pages to Facebook.

The latest Facebook-related security flap is unrelated to last week's outcry after it was discovered the social network the social networking permitted apps to get silently added to profiles whenever a user is logged in and surfs onto particular sites. The behaviour was used to distribute adware, prompting promises of a clean-up by the social networking site. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Ice cream headache as black hat hacks sack Dairy Queen
I scream, you scream, we all scream 'DATA BREACH'!
Goog says patch⁵⁰ your Chrome
64-bit browser loads cat vids FIFTEEN PERCENT faster!
JLaw, Kate Upton exposed in celeb nude pics hack
100 women victimised as Apple iCloud accounts reportedly popped
NIST to sysadmins: clean up your SSH mess
Too many keys, too badly managed
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
Researchers camouflage haxxor traps with fake application traffic
Honeypots sweetened to resemble actual workloads, complete with 'secure' logins
Attack flogged through shiny-clicky social media buttons
66,000 users popped by malicious Flash fudging add-on
New Snowden leak: How NSA shared 850-billion-plus metadata records
'Federated search' spaffed info all over Five Eyes chums
Three quarters of South Korea popped in online gaming raids
Records used to plunder game items, sold off to low lifes
Oz fed police in PDF redaction SNAFU
Give us your metadata, we'll publish your data
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.