Feeds

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

No laughing matter

Security for virtualized datacentres

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. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
FYI: OS X Yosemite's Spotlight tells Apple EVERYTHING you're looking for
It's on by default – didn't you read the small print?
Edward who? GCHQ boss dodges Snowden topic during last speech
UK spies would rather 'walk' than do 'mass surveillance'
Microsoft pulls another dodgy patch
Redmond makes a hash of hashing add-on
NOT OK GOOGLE: Android images can conceal code
It's been fixed, but hordes won't have applied the upgrade
DEATH by PowerPoint: Microsoft warns of 0-day attack hidden in slides
Might put out patch in update, might chuck it out sooner
'LulzSec leader Aush0k' found to be naughty boy not worthy of jail
15 months home detention leaves egg on feds' faces as they grab for more power
prev story

Whitepapers

Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.