Spammers flood Facebook’s own Help Center

Spammers flood Facebook's own Help Center

Flood of spam on Facebook Help CenterSpammers have overrun the Facebook Help Center, clogging up the social network's self-help support forum to such an extent that it has become effectively useless.

Regular reader Sue brought the problem to Naked Security’s attention, saying that multiple accounts were creating threads unrelated to support topics, but instead advertising websites which offer streaming TV feeds for popular sporting events.

As you can see from the screenshot below, it’s hard to find genuine questions and answers in the Facebook Help Center when it’s flooded with spam messages:

Facebook Help Center, with spam messages

The Help Center’s “Search” section is particularly badly hit, but there are also threads of spam messages elsewhere in the community forum.

Here’s an example of one spam messages posted on the site, advertising a service which claims to offer streaming coverage of an international cricket match:

The spam messages typically promote streaming TV websites

Naked Security reader Sue told us via email last week:

"Of course I have reported many as "spam" and I have sent one of the generic feedback forms, but I have little confidence that Facebook will even notice. Is there something that you can do, as a recognized organization with a presence on Facebook to let Facebook know of this nuisance?"

Consider it done, Sue.

By the way, this isn’t the first time that spam has become a problem in the Facebook Help Center. Last November we reported a very similar attack.

As more and more people spend time on Facebook, it becomes an ever more attractive environment for spammers to try to spread their messages. Facebook’s developers need to work hard to keep the community safe, blocking as much spam proactively as possible, and the site’s security team needs to keep on the ball when offending messages are reported to them.

If you’re on Facebook and want to learn more about spam, malware, scams and other threats, you should join the Sophos Facebook page where we have a thriving community of over 190,000 people.