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 Tuesday, February 16, 2010
Scareware scams switch to social network smut lures

Scams which attempt to trick users into volunteering personal credentials in return for free pornography have moved over onto social networks.

More than nine out of ten (92 per cent) of such adult phishing scams recorded in January took place on social networking sites such as Facebook and Bebo, according to the latest monthly security report from Symantec. Once fraudsters have snaffled personal credentials, surfers are often redirected to sites punting scareware scams rather than smut.

Scareware scams more commonly rely on manipulating search engine results for search terms in the news, such as the death of an athlete practising for the luge event at the winter Olympics. These results are poisoned so that surfers looking for videos of this tragedy (as explained by Sophos here) are instead redirected to anti-virus scan scam portals, which warn of non-existent malware risks in a bid to trick users into buying worthless scamware.

 

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