Facebook users, beware! A message from a Facebook page that claims CNN announcement regarding the finding of the missing AirASia Flight QZ8501 in Tacloban area of Philippines. The message invites you to click on a supposed image of the jet with a �Play� button on it just in case if�you want to see the breaking news footage.
The message turned out to be a complex Facebook survey scam and has no connection whatsoever with the CNN news outlet. At the time the message was posted, the doomed flight was not yet found and the images in the message are actually from another AirAsia incident in 2011 when the jet simply slid off the runway in Malaysia causing minor injuries.
Victims of this scam who clicked the �Play� button found themselves redirected to a sham CNN looking homepage. On the page you will find a�video�claiming to�show the plane�s crash site and discovery.
Users who reached this page found a popup that asked them to like and share the video on Facebook to be able to view it and those who did do that found another popup asking them to complete a survey to watch the full video.
The link of the survey opens up third-party sites that request the user enters their name, phone number, and other personal contact information to enter a draw to win prizes. There is also a point where the victims of this scam were asked to download a �video plugin update�. Unfortunately for those who fell for it, it contained adware�that took over their browser.
Here�s the scam part. Unfortunately for those who followed all of those steps, they found themselves bombarded by very persistent marketing phone calls. The scam did also cause financial damage to its victims as by giving their personal details, users actually signed up for an expensive SMS service that is ongoing and charges them money for text messages they send, according to HoaxSlayer
Every time someone unknowingly signs up for this scam, the people behind it earn commission from those fraudulent programs.
While this scam survey is fairly new due to the recent AirAsia plane incident, you can expect many more similar scams in the next few weeks as online criminals take advantage of such news to draw in their victims.
Video scams on the rise:
There has been an increase in shocking video scams on the web, especially on Facebook. In past, cybercriminals took advantage of devastating MH17�Malaysian flight crash by�creating�fake Facebook pages in the names of victims to earn money. Another scam claimed�Missing Malaysia Jet found in Bermuda Triangle which was spreading malware on Facebook.�
Another scam took advantage of�the F1 driving star Michael Schumacher who suffered a severe head injury after a ski-accident in the French Alps and was placed in a medically induced coma by the doctors. The�Schumacher scam claimed that he is dead, but actually it was an attempt to�drive traffic to certain�webpages.�
Another active video scam on Facebook claims to show clips of a naked woman eaten by a shark.�
A piece of advice:
We request our readers not to click video links claiming to be shocking videos and only choose to view videos from authentic sites like YouTube or selected Facebook pages.