Feeds

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

No laughing matter

Intelligent flash storage arrays

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. ®

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
Regin: The super-spyware the security industry has been silent about
NSA fingered as likely source of complex malware family
Why did it take antivirus giants YEARS to drill into super-scary Regin? Symantec responds...
FYI this isn't just going to target Windows, Linux and OS X fans
Privacy bods offer GOV SPY VICTIMS a FREE SPYWARE SNIFFER
Looks for gov malware that evades most antivirus
Home Office: Fancy flogging us some SECRET SPY GEAR?
If you do, tell NOBODY what it's for or how it works
HACKERS can DELETE SURVEILLANCE DVRS remotely – report
Hikvision devices wide open to hacking, claim securobods
'Regin': The 'New Stuxnet' spook-grade SOFTWARE WEAPON described
'A degree of technical competence rarely seen'
Syrian Electronic Army in news site 'hack' POP-UP MAYHEM
Gigya redirect exploit blamed for pop-rageous ploy
Astro-boffins start opening universe simulation data
Got a supercomputer? Want to simulate a universe? Here you go
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing and building an open ITOA architecture
Learn about a new IT data taxonomy defined by the four data sources of IT visibility: wire, machine, agent, and synthetic data sets.
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.
5 critical considerations for enterprise cloud backup
Key considerations when evaluating cloud backup solutions to ensure adequate protection security and availability of enterprise data.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.