Feeds

Superhero game beta sucks boobs into honeypot

'Absolutely the most useless Beta key in history'

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Gamers anxious to try out DC Universe Online ahead of its official release have become the targets of a scam designed to trick them into completing bogus surveys.

DC Universe Online, a multiplayer online game for Playstation 3 and PCs, will allow gamers to take out bad guys alongside the likes of Batman, Superman and other DC Comics superheroes. Fraudsters have latched onto interest in the game as a theme for fake survey scams that earn them affiliate revenues from unscrupulous web firms.

Numerous fraudulent YouTube videos and blogs have sprung up over recent days touting fake key generation tools for the eagerly-anticipated comic book themed game. Most of these videos or blog posts point to the same spamblog, which invites users to download the “DC Universe Online Beta Registration” package.

Users who attempt to download the software are obliged to complete one of a range of surveys that falsely offer iPads and the like as a potential prize for answering a few questions. In reality, the surveys attempt to hoodwink marks into handing over personal information for later spamming or worse.

Gamers taken in by the scam who progress far enough to download the supposed key generation tool will be left disappointed. The tool is not malicious, but neither does it work.

"Hitting 'Generate Code' gives you a Beta key that is absolutely the most useless Beta key in the history of anything," reports Chris Boyd (paperghost), a security researcher at Sunbelt Software and experienced gamer.

"All the program does is display the same short list of non random codes over and over again, every time you fire it up. Predictably, this doesn’t help very much when trying to join the Beta."

Survey scams have become a popular way to trick gamers into wasting their time in order to rake in disreputable affiliate incomes over recent months. Previous cons, for example, have targeted Doctor Who fans.

"Anything that takes place after you’ve filled in the survey is just filler – the story ends once you’ve filled in a survey and the scammer has generated affiliate cash," Boyd explains. "All you’re left with is a (non infectious) fake application, a bunch of non working Beta keys and a grumpy Activation Code page telling you off for repeatedly entering fake codes."

Boyd has published a full write-up of the scam, complete with screenshots, in a blog post here. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
Sway: Microsoft's new Office app doesn't have an Undo function
Content aggregation, meet the workplace ... oh
Sign off my IT project or I’ll PHONE your MUM
Honestly, it’s a piece of piss
Return of the Jedi – Apache reclaims web server crown
.london, .hamburg and .公司 - that's .com in Chinese - storm the web server charts
Chrome 38's new HTML tag support makes fatties FIT and SKINNIER
First browser to protect networks' bandwith using official spec
Admins! Never mind POODLE, there're NEW OpenSSL bugs to splat
Four new patches for open-source crypto libraries
Torvalds CONFESSES: 'I'm pretty good at alienating devs'
Admits to 'a metric ****load' of mistakes during work with Linux collaborators
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
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.
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.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.