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Dear Blast Readers,
You are on your Facebook account, answering messages, liking posts, watching videos, and commenting on your friend’s photos. Suddenly, you receive a message from your friend Sam. The message contains a link to a funny cat video in which a cat in a hat is dancing with a maraca in its mouth. The message below the video says “Hilarious video. You NEED to check it out!”. Without giving it a second thought you click on the link to view the video. But, instead of viewing the video you get redirected to a site that you don’t recognize or trust. Naturally, you exit out of the browser thinking that maybe Sam has attached the wrong URL. But, it is too late. Your device has already been infected.
Security experts have identified a form of adware that targets social media users tricking them into infecting their own devices. It is known as the “Facebook Notification Virus”. This virus displays messages saying that they are from Facebook. The “Facebook Notification Virus” creates many different forms of messages, including:
- Friend Requests
- Chat Messages
Some of the notifications that the user received are real copies of notifications that users would see on the real social media site (making the fake notifications seem legit). While other notifications are presenting new features. The purpose of this adware is to redirect users to specific websites, most likely malicious websites, so that the user’s device becomes infected with malicious software. This virus does not just lead users to malicious websites, it also:
- Monitors User Activity
- Collects User Information
- Records Browsing History
- Tracks Cookies
- Tracks Keystrokes
- Tracks IP Addresses
- Tracks Geographic Location
- Tracks Zip Codes
- Tracks Demographic Profiles
- Tracks Emails
- Tracks Telephone Numbers
- Tracks Usernames
- Tracks Passwords
After all this information is collected, the collector, hacker, will then attempt to sell your confidential information on Darknet Markets, then falling into the hands of much more malicious cyber criminals.
So, how does this virus spread?
The “Facebook Notification Virus” can be spread a few different ways, including:
- Pirated copies of paid utilities.
Another way that it can spread is through spam emails. The sender of the spam emails wants you to open the so that his or her tool can get inside your system and infect it.
To protect your data and system from the “Facebook Notification Virus”, if you receive any suspicious messages from “Facebook”, you should:
- Check your system, because you may have been infected.
- Be careful of the software that you allow in your machine.
- Verify the email addresses of the “companies” that have messaged you (visit the contact page on the official website of the “company” to verify the email address).
If you have any questions relating to the “Facebook Notification Virus”, cyber security, or computer forensics contact FDS Global. You can reach us at our office at (954)727-1957 or by email at RMoody@FDS.Global. Please feel free to visit our website at www.FDS.Global.