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'Facebook Has Sent You a Message' Pharmacy Spam

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

Facebook Pharmacy Spam Emails


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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Subject: Facebook Updatese

Notification message.

Here are some notifications you've missed. 2 notification messages has been re-sent to you.

Facebook Notifcation Pharmacy Spam

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. A later version claims that 2 notifications "has been re-sent" and urges recipients to click a "View Messages" Button.

However, following these links in fact opens a dodgy Canadian Pharmacy website that tries to sell visitors pharmaceutical products. The messages have 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 links.

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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Last updated: July 3, 2013
First published: July 6, 2011
Written by Brett M. Christensen
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