According to the security company Bitdefender, at least two million computers have been infected and may have had their data stolen so far—just from users clicking on one link to an advertisement on their "Facebook" pages.
Here's how this "Facebook" scam works:
On your "Facebook" page you may see an ad (although you might not recognize it as an ad) that shows a photo of one of your friends—along with his or her name—and promises to show you that friend's naked or private videos.
Clicking on this link takes you to a phony "YouTube" page that looks just like a real "YouTube" page—complete with a warning that you must be a certain age to view the video. While you are busy confirming your age, this phony "YouTube" page is infecting your browser with malware.
This malware then collects your list of friends and a photo of you so that this scam can continue. How? By making the "Facebook" advertisement that you saw on your “Facebook” page appear on your friends' "Facebook" pages—but now with promises to show them naked or private videos of you!
Once you bypass the age restriction on the phony "YouTube" page, you will get a message that you need an updated version of Adobe Flash player to continue. If you click to download this phony Adobe player update you will download instead a second version of this malware.
Once a Trojan Horse like this is installed, it can do anything from recording the keystrokes you make on your keyboard and the sites you visit, to stealing all your identity and banking information if you bank online.
Check out other “Facebook” scams in the above video.
If you're using an advanced browser like Firefox or Chrome, along with up-to-date anti-virus software—your computer will probably detect and prevent the malware from infecting your computer when it first lands on the make-believe "YouTube" page. That's why, once you bypass the age restriction on the phony "YouTube" page, you get a message that you need an updated version of Adobe Flash player to continue. So, if the malware didn't install the first time, it will after you click to install this phony Adobe Flash player update.
While this "Facebook" scam is new, it is spreading rapidly. So, if you don't want to get caught in an embarrassing position, be sure that you are using an advanced browser and that your virus software is current. Also, only download updates to your browser, anti-virus software and Flash player through the respective company's website, not through third-party websites that may offer it.
If your computer doesn't have any anti-virus software, or you're concerned about the cost of anti-virus software, you might want to look at free AVG protection. Don't be one of the millions caught in this “Facebook” scam.
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