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Facebook Spam and What to do Against it

Updated on May 2, 2011

Unfortunately there are plenty of Criminals using social networks like Facebook to their fortune and pollute the networks with automatically generated spam. In this Article I will introduce you to the most common Spam types and explain what you can do about them.

How Spam works

Generally speaking most types of Spam work pretty much in the same way. You receive a Link in any way, which tells you something really interesting and motivates you to click on it. Then you will be lead to an External website and while you are visiting the external website it may happen that you download viruses, trojans and other problematic programmes to your computer via so called Drive-By-Downloads. This are Downloads which start automatically in the background, while you are visiting the website.

Spam Applications

There is a new wave of Spam polluting the social networt Facebook at the moment. Like you may have noticed yourself, you receive lots of invitation from friends which look like: “WTF you are the person checking my profile most” or similar. Then you are supposed to click on a link that would lead you to an application which tells you, who views your own profile. Be very careful with this because it is a trap. This link leads you to an external website, which tells you how to use the software. First of all: DO NOT DO THIS!!! In case you are doing this, then you create an event yourself about this very application, which will send invitations to many of your friends.

Picture and Video tagged Spam

Another famous Facebook spam are tagged pictures and videos. In this case you, or one of your friends, are tagged in a random picture with an interesting title. A few days ago there was a picture of a half naked girl and the title said something like: “Unbelievable this chick just committed suicide in front of her webcam, follow the link and watch the video”. This is a Trap as well. The same like in the other spams will happen here as well. The link will lead you to an external website and there viruses and other stuff are downloaded to your computer. Additionally while clicking on the link you create one of those pictures or videos yourself, which will tag many of your friends and the same story starts again.

Spam per Chat-Message

Chat Spam is a really tricky method, where a Link is posted in your Facebook chat box by one of your friends. The problem is that you normally trust your friends and therefore your are clicking on the Link. Then the same thing happens again. You will be lead to an external website and viruses will be downloaded to your computer and you automatically create a the same message, which will be send you many of your friends.

What can I do against Facebook-Spam?

Unfortunately there is not much you can do in order to avoid Spam or get into the trap. First of all do not click on every link that suggests something dodgy. Avoid messages and links posted by friends you have not spoken with lately, especially if there is a link without any explanation. The best way to test if a link is ok, is to ask the person how posted it, if the link was actually sent from him or her. In case you have been tagged in a picture or video that looks suspicious, simply delete your tag, just be careful that you do not click on the link. Get in touch with the social network and tell them about your problems and that they should solve it. It is in their interest too, that the network is free from spam.


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