Facebook fake video spam campaigns continue


Facebook users have been warned off clicking on links that purport to show a video of a woman in a bikini.

Spammers have used the fake video link to spread it to other site users, as - once clicked on - the link automatically reposts itself to others in the user's network.

The post carries the description, "Look what this girl is wearing at the beach in front of thousands of people!" or, "During the summer holidays, this girl took the opportunity to do something unheard of! I bet no one can do the same." There is also a picture to go with the link showing a woman in a pink bikini.

Those hoping for a titillating glimpse of a nearly naked woman are instead shown nothing.

The purpose of luring people to click on these links is usually to direct users to dubious websites riddled with malware.

Another link with the same intent is supposed to show a man being eaten by a snake.

In this instance, users are encouraged to fill out an online survey before showing the video (which does not happen). This survey earns cash for the scammers. Such links also lead to toolbars being installed in a user's web browser and adware that is hard to get rid of.

Indepdent security expert Graham Cluley said if scammers manage to trick many Facebook users into sharing the link, and use a sensational video as bait, it is going to spread fast.

"Don't let the fraudsters and online criminals win. If you really want to watch a video, go to a site like YouTube which never forces you to share a link on Facebook or complete an online survey before you get to watch the content," said Cluley.

Facebook has warned users not to click on strange links, even ones from friends. While it has taken steps to eradicate the practice, scams such as these keep coming back.

"It would certainly be good to see the site becoming more proactive in protecting its users, and keeping the money out of the pockets of scammers," said Cluley.

He also flagged another scam, this time a fake video of a plane crashing into a bridge, that has been doing the rounds for the last 24 hours.

Rene Millman

Rene Millman is a freelance writer and broadcaster who covers cybersecurity, AI, IoT, and the cloud. He also works as a contributing analyst at GigaOm and has previously worked as an analyst for Gartner covering the infrastructure market. He has made numerous television appearances to give his views and expertise on technology trends and companies that affect and shape our lives. You can follow Rene Millman on Twitter.