Security experts from Microsoft have come across a Facebook scam that advertises free $250 Costco gift cards.
It all starts like a classic survey scam. The user is presented with a free offer for Costco Wholesale Cash Cards which he can win if he shares the advertisement on Facebook and posts a comment.
In the second phase, internauts are promised a $500 gift card in return for some information such as name, address, birth date, zip code, email address, and phone number.
At this point, a fine print displayed on the bottom of the page reveals that by submitting the details, customers are actually authorizing auto-dialed phone calls and SMSs to the entered number.
However, the scheme doesn’t end here. Victims are not only requested to complete various surveys, but they’re also asked to install a “coupon app” which in reality is a hidden toolbar which monitors browsing habits. Microsoft has identified this piece of software as BrowserModifier:Win32/BSaving.
Be careful about freebies on Facebook, no matter how tempting they seem to be. It’s uncertain what the information is collected for, but judging by the shady marketing that’s involved, it’s certainly not something that would benefit users.
Be careful about freebies on Facebook, no matter how tempting they seem to be.