CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - As summer vacations start and people want to post pictures, videos, and updates, cybercreeps are on the hunt trying to get you to click on bad links.
According to Facebook, they have more than 400 million active users and each one has on average 130 friends. People are spending over 500 billion minutes per month on Facebook.
Former White House cyber expert Theresa Payton says cyberscumbags go where the action is so it's no surprise that they are up to some new tricks trying to dupe you into clicking on bad links.
The cybercreeps are in full swing posting many different types of attacks.
They take advantage of 3 Human Emotions:
- Fear Factor – You are worried about pictures that might make you look bad
- Humor Factor – We all need a break that makes us smile like videos of dancing babies or cute puppies
- Celebrity Factor – Using Key Sports Events or Celebrities to get you to look
3 EASY WAYS TO SPOT AND AVOID ATTACKS:
- Think Before You Click: Remember the 3 Factors of Fear, Humor, Celebrity – does the tagline meet that criteria? If so, it is most likely a scam
- Search: When in doubt, type the tagline next to the link into your favorite search engine and see if you get hits that say it is a scam
- Research: Sophos has a great alert page on Facebook so check there before clicking that link
WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE A VICTIM:
Take 5 minutes to do the following 3 steps:
- Run a virus scan on your computer (If after the scan your computer seems like it is running slow or running programs even when nothing is open – contact a computer support expert immediately!)
- Change your Facebook password RIGHT AWAY
- If your Facebook password happened to be the same password as on your other online accounts, change all of them to something different
FACEBOOK USERS CAN GET MCAFEE PROTECTION FOR 6 MONTHS FOR FREE:
EXAMPLES OF RECENT SCAMS:
CELEBRITY FACTOR: One has a message "Paramore n-a-k-ed photo leaked," which lures people into thinking they can see Hayley Williams naked.
HUMOR FACTOR: Another attack comes as a message that says a "hilarious video" is attached. When you click, a Facebook login pops up. Looks legit, right? It's not. Once you log in, the cybercreeps have created a program to log you in and then the program will ask you to install a media player. If you click ok, malicious software will download.
These creeps may actually post the link on your wall. Just don't click on it and remove it from your wall.
LIKEJACKING: Another attack is spreading through Facebook using the Like feature. You may see that a friend "Likes" a link and then when you click on it you are presented with a blank page and a message to "Click here to continue". If you click, it adds the "Like" link to your page. So far, this attack looks like a test and does not seem to do more than make the "Like" of a page go viral. Stay tuned though, I am sure there will be more to that attack.
A LINK TO AN EXAMPLE OF A "HUMOR FACTOR" ATTACK:
If you want to see what the "hilarious video" attack looks like, click here to see a video provided by Mashable and Websense:
A LINK TO AN EXAMPLE OF LIKEJACKING ATTACK:
If you want to see what the "Like" attack looks like, click here to see a screen shot from Mashable:
HOW TO SPOT SCAMS:
Facebook has a Security page that notifies Facebook users about recent scams:
Sophos has a great Facebook page to warn you about cybercreeps! Check it out at http://www.sophos.com/security/best-practice/facebook/ , or look at their company webpage www.Sophos.com before clicking on a link to see if they have seen an issue with the link.
According to Sophos.com, some of the messages for the "Like" scam have the following text:
"Distracting Beach Babes"
"LOL This girl gets OWNED after a POLICE OFFICER reads her STATUS MESSAGE."
"This man takes a picture of himself EVERYDAY for 8 YEARS!!"
"The Prom Dress That Got This Girl Suspended From School."
"This Girl Has An Interesting Way Of Eating A Banana, Check It Out!"