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Facebook scams aiming to profit from recent tragedies at Norway and Amy Winehouse’s death

25
Jul
2011

The tragic events that occurred at the end of last week with the Norway attacks and the sudden death of the British singer Amy Winehouse incurred some unwanted scam activities in cyberspace. Websense Security Labs ThreatSeeker Network
has detected that scams pretending to offer a 'look at footage of Amy Winehouse just moments after her death' and similar scams in nature are now propagating in Facebook. The type of scam is a 'survey scam' where users are lured to complete a survey and in return promised to be shown an 'exclusive' video or footage – completion of the surveys puts some money in the scammer's pockets and users that completed the surveys aren't shown with the promised videos or footage.

 

This is how it looks like on Facebook:

 

 

 

 

The scam leads to a survey page:

 

 

Scams have also taken advantage over the tragic 'Norway attacks' surfaced this weekend, those appear to have been cleaned out by Facebook:

 

 

Facebook Scams – An Ongoing Phenomenon

 

Survey scams on Facebook are an ongoing thing, they're not limited to one news event (tragic or not) alone or one domain, they keep track of current news events and aim to lure Facebook users with any means possible. Here is a snapshot of such domains that propagate via Facebook at the time of writing this blog, they pop-up like mushrooms after the rain and they all share similarities – those lures seem to use the same toolkit or application skeleton used to build them all – similar phenomenon to what we blogged on in the past, anybody can get their hands on those "template" applications and create Facebook threats in relatively minutes. Here are some examples of dominating threats at the moment on Facebook: 

 

 

Scam: "This Is What Happen When Ex Girlfriend Forgets To Turn Off Her Webcam!!!"

 

Scam [translated from Italian] : "Boy Betrays His Girlfriend And Accidently Put The Video On Facebook  [Ragazzo tradisce la propria ragazza con una Mora da paura e mette per sbaglio il video su FACEBOOK. ASSOLUTAMENTE DA VEDERE"] 

 

Scam: "R4p3d g1rl 1n th3 sch00l bathroom – Sh0cking Video"


 

Scam: "FATHER gets TOTALLY Embarrassed After Entering Daughters Room"

 


Scam: "This is what Happend to his Ex GirlFriend!"


 

Scam Threats On Facebook Spread Swiftly

All the threats illustrated above are happening on Facebook NOW – the time of writing this blog. The next image is an example to show of how many users are actually falling to the "This is what Happend to his Ex GirlFriend!" scam. It is literally happening less than every second:


 

ThreatSeeker on the Prowl

This is a snapshot from our internal ThreatSeeker portal showing a slice of the hostnames that the network detected that match the above profile. Websense customers are protected from those threats by ACE, our Advanced Classification Engine.

 

 

 

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