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Issue 117 - August 2011 - Page 13

'Facebook Has Sent You a Message' Pharmacy Spam

Issue 117 Start Menu

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Seemingly official email purporting to be from Facebook Support, asks you to click a link to receive a message.

Brief Analysis
The message is not from Facebook. The link leads to a notorious "Canadian Pharmacy" website that tries to peddle a range of pharmaceutical products.

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Detailed analysis and references below example.

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Last updated: 6th July 2011
First published: 6th July 2011
Article written by Brett M. Christensen
About Brett Christensen and Hoax-Slayer

Subject: Facebook Support has sent you a message

Facebook has sent you a message

To receive message, follow the link below:
[Link Removed]

The Facebook Support

Facebook Phramacy Spam

Detailed Analysis
This email, which is all gussied up to look like it really does come from Facebook, simply informs the user that, to receive a waiting message from "The Facebook Support", they need to follow the link as instructed. However, following the link in fact opens a dodgy Canadian Pharmacy website that tries to sell visitors pharmaceutical products. The message has no connection to Facebook. The spammers have simply copied the formatting and colour scheme of genuine Facebook messages as a means of enticing unsuspecting recipients into following their link.

It is very unwise to buy any medication from one of these spam pharmacy websites. Even if you do actually receive a product that you order on such a site, you have no way of knowing if it is the real thing or some potentially dangerous substitute. Thus, taking such medication may be dangerous and against the law. And such sites often do not use secure pages to process credit card transactions, which could put your credit card details at risk. Moreover, any outfit willing to use deceptive and highly unethical tactics to promote its wares such as sending spam email disguised as Facebook messages is not someone who can be trusted with your credit card or other personal details.

And, to make matters worse, the sites that these spam messages link to often harbour various forms of malware.

Spammers have regularly used such tactics. In an earlier campaign, users received emails falsely claiming that their Facebook account had been deactivated. As in this example, links in the emails pointed to an online drug store. And spammers have also used bogus Twitter emails that again featured links to Canadian Pharmacy websites.

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Facebook Deactivated Account Spam
Pharmacy Spam Disguised as Twitter Emails

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Issue 117 Start Menu

Pages in this month's issue:
  1. FB Security "Hacker" and "Virus" Warning
  2. Hoax: HIV Infected Blood In Pepsi
  3. Advance Fee Scam - Facebook 2011 Sweepstakes Online Lottery
  4. Hugh Hefner is NOT Dead - R.I.P. Hugh Hefner Facebook Virus Warning Hoax
  5. Wrench 3D Printing Viral Video
  6. Fake News Report Falsely Claims Mark Zuckerberg Arrested for Child Molestation
  7. Shutdown Cell Phone Virtual Kidnapping Scam Warning
  8. Facebook 'Virus' Warning - Girl in a Plaid Skirt
  9. Credit Card Overdue Malware Email
  10. Mobile Phone Misinformation - XALAN and #90 Hoax
  11. Hoax Warning: Lost Child Lure - 'New Way for Gang Members to Rape Women
  12. Hoax: Nadia Comaneci's Gymnast Granddaughter Viral Video
  13. 'Facebook Has Sent You a Message' Pharmacy Spam
  14. ''Uniform Traffic Ticket' Malware Email
  15. IRS 'Unable To Process Your Tax Return' Malware Email
  16. Nestle Banana Baby Food Recall Warning
  17. Hoax: Facebook to Start Charging This Summer - Facebook Icon Will Turn Blue
  18. Hoax - Nagasaki Arch Survives Both Atomic Bomb and Tsunami
  19. Alert From Facebook Security Team Phishing Scam
  20. Dollar Bills Stamped With 'NO GOD BUT ALLAH'