Facebook survey? Not really

Filed Under: Facebook, Privacy, Social networks, Spam

With Facebook's continued success, internet con artists cannot resist the temptation to cash in. A new spam campaign is making the rounds pretending to be a Facebook survey that offers the chance to win unbelievable prizes. This attack seems to target US and UK Facebook users, as the scammers don't allow you to access their website from other countries.

Facebook survey scam

You can see that this message claims to be from a company here in Vancouver, Canada, which is plausible. Canada has yet to pass anti-spam laws and is a safe haven for this annoying practice. I am considering paying these guys a visit to see if the address is correct and find out why they think this style of promotion is acceptable. They are only a few blocks from our office.

Facebook scam website

If you proceed to the site you get the standard "answer these surveys for terrific prizes" pitch. You can choose between a $250 Walmart gift card, a $250 Apple gift card, a $250 Best Buy gift card, an iPhone 4, or an iPad. Too good to be true? I think you know the answer.

The "survey" directs you to another page that asks for oodles of personally identifiable information with some very fine print at the bottom.

The text at the bottom of the page reads: "By clicking the Continue button, I have read and agree to 2010SocialSurvey.com's Privacy Policy and Terms & Conditions. I am providing my signature expressly requesting a phone call, pre-recorded message, SMS text (std msg rates may apply) and/or email from this list of Marketing Partners, WCA, NationalCashFinder, Debt Reduction Experts, YourDiabeticSavings, MyEducationAdvisors or Automobile Protection Plus."

Small print

In addition to being very intrusive and requiring a whole lot of data I am not willing to share, it started to really reek of scam when I realized all of the links on the page to the privacy policy, terms and conditions, and other things that should be there for my protection do not work. These simply redirect me to the page I was already on.

There have been a lot of scams going around, and I hate to tell you this, but no one is going to give you an iPad or $250 by clicking a link or two. Follow your instincts and press the delete key if you receive this or other scams that sound too good to be true.

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About the author

Chester Wisniewski is a Senior Security Advisor at Sophos Canada. He provides advice and insight into the latest threats for security and IT professionals with the goal of providing clear guidance on complex topics. You can follow Chester on Twitter as @chetwisniewski, on App.net as Chester, Chester Wisniewski on Google Plus or send him an email at chesterw@sophos.com.