A viral Facebook scam claims to have video footage of a roller coaster crash that has left 16 people–or 17 people–dead, but it’s a fake. Facebook announced last week it will clean up spammy links that only go to ads like the roller coaster one.
The scam takes users to a page that is designed to look like Facebook, where they will be prompted to share first before going further.
“No such roller coaster accident occurred; no such ‘shocking video footage’ exists. The above post and others like it are bait for a clickjacking/phishing scam in which users are redirected to pages outside Facebook and tricked into divulging their log-in information (email address and password), enabling scammers to hijack their accounts,” says About.com about the scam.
Users should be wary of “shocking news” or “breaking news” links that have lurid or catastrophic incidents.
These scams are used to make money for cyber-criminals.
According to security blogger Graham Cluley, these scams should be getting cleaned up by Facebook.
“Some stories in News Feed use inaccurate language or formatting to try and trick people into clicking through to a website that contains only ads or a combination of frequently circulated content and ads. For instance, often these stories claim to link to a photo album but instead take the viewer to a website with just ads,” Facebook said earlier this month.
However, it appears that many of the fake posts are still going around.
“So, I think Facebook has a lot of work to do still – right now the stream of information showing up in users’ newsfeeds still contains too much pollution,” Cluley writes.