Facebook is undoubtedly the most popular social networking site in the world. That is why it is not surprising that it is a constant target of unscrupulous parties, which intend to defraud and deceive Facebook users for their own gains.
Over the weekend, an online security researcher issued another warning against a scam that is starting to circulate across the social networking site. Graham Cluley, a technology researcher who used to work at Sophos, said there is a new survey scam that is pretending to be an interesting and alarming video online.
Plane crash scam
Mr. Cluley warned Facebook users against a message that may appear in their own newsfeed. The message may contain the line: “Huge plane crashes into bridge!” He said the message also advises users to “watch this terrible accident.” It even advises viewers to be “18+ only.”
Naturally, anyone would be curious about the video. It is obviously supposed to be a breaking news story that aims to hook thousands of unsuspecting and curious users. Once the link provided is clicked, the Facebook user would be redirected to a bogus Facebook page that would directly ask him to share the same video to other users.
According to Mr. Cluley, the link would just want users to share it to as many people as they could. This would logically increase the volume of Facebook users who would ultimately visit the same page.
Those who religiously follow the instructions on the link would end up somehow completing an online survey, which in turn would promise great prizes and other generous perks. Anyone could easily be deceived by those prizes at stake. But in reality, scammers are just earning commissions through high traffic. Obviously, the prizes are also not really at stake.
Mr. Cluley noted that such a scam may not be harmful if it would remain that way. But he thinks that it would still be serious especially if unsuspecting users share their personal information. Personal data may lead to more unwanted offers and even incur more spam messages online.
The upside to this issue is that so far, there is no report yet that the same scam has defrauded Facebook users. However, users are generally advised not entertain such scams, or they would possibly be exposed to more serious risks in the future.