Anaconda Coughs Up An Entire Hippo! – Facebook Survey Scam
IT security firm Sophos released a warning this week about a survey scam which surfaced on Facebook, reinforcing the fact that social media platforms continue to be targeted by attackers looking to hijack user profiles.
Sophos explains that the offending Facebook application hijacks user profiles and automatically posts links to the survey as status messages and wall posts of compromised Facebook profiles.
Attackers lure users by the following message : “OMG, this is the biggest and scariest snake I have ever seen, check out this video [LINK REMOVED]”. When curious users click on the link, it redirects them to a malicious Facebook application, which tricks them into granting permissions to access their profile. From there, the application automatically updates their status message and adds wall posts. Once users have been duped, they are again prompted to complete an online survey, after which they are promised a video of an Anaconda snake coughing-up an entire Hippopotamus.
“This is one of the most bizarre scams we have ever seen on Facebook, but its purpose remains familiar,” said Graham Cluley, a senior security consultant at Sophos.
As Sophos points out, the main purpose behind the attack is to get users complete an online survey for which the attackers are paid a commission. Even if users realize that the online survey is a scam, the application they just granted privileges too, has by then already abused their account to send out spam messages to practically everyone on their friend list.
Other recent spam attacks on Facebook include the world’s worst McDonald’s customer attack, which tricks the users into granting permissions to an application which abuses their profile in order to spread the spam. This attack promises users a ‘shocking video’ of the world’s worst McDonald’s customers.