Popular social networks Facebook and Twitter are experiencing increasingly aggressive probing by hackers for security holes, according to Bryon Acohido, for USA Today. After an attacker finds a fresh vulnerability and disperses a test posting to check it out, spamming gangs blast high volumes of spam through the new hole until the hole is discovered and fixed. The object is to get users to click to a webpage full of ads or to an advertising-related survey. Advertisers then pay the “clickjackers” per click, bringing them hundreds of thousands of dollars daily.
Recent flaws discovered include one in Twitter’s “mouse-over” feature and Facebook’s photo-upload and status-messaging features. Mousing-over or clicking on these corrupted links causes an identical link to be sent to all of your friends, spreading the attacks exponentially.
Practicing safe behavior online is the best way to protect yourself from attacks. Be suspicious of anything that looks or feels strange – a request for money, a message from someone you haven’t been in touch with for a while, or promises of something valuable if you click on a link or provide personal information.
Social networks can be a wonderful tool if used correctly and with caution. Be alert, however, to be safe. Check out our website for the latest information concerning newly-discovered security breeches that you should know about.