The old "new" Japanese scams16/03/2011 Written by Boris Mutina (minor.float)
Dear friends, in these days we all turned our minds to Japan, to the Japanese people, some of them are our friends, or some of our friends live in Japan.
We would like to express the condolences to the families which lost their family members. We are deeply concerned about the injuries and losses caused by the earthquake set, tsunami flooding and the nuclear catastrophe.
Nevertheless, we have to express also our anger. We already recorded first set of the scam emails asking the unaware users to donate for the charity, but as usual the money will never come to the victims. The scam scenario is very similar to other scams using donating over PayPal, WU, Moneygram etc…
Another form of the scam is the Facebook clickjacking/likejacking scam with the sick title “Japans Tsunami Sends whale Smashing Into A Building” or similar. While the people are hot for the news from Japan, this and similar scams serve to the viral spreading of the link, some of them also deliver an unsolicited ads. Already many security companies informed about this issue (for example Sophos reported it here).
Such scam websites are also trying to trick the users into entering their data into the fake surveys…
Lastly BBC had to denounce a fake news that panicked the people across the Asia. The news was spread via the SMS but also on the social networks claiming that the Japanese government issued the warning about a possibility of the radioactive rain in Phillipines and Hong Kong. This wannabe joke can act contra productively — if a real warning will be issued, and this can happen every minute, it is possible that some of the affected people will not react because of the previous fake news.
The social engineering techniques used in the above mentioned cases are nothing new, but this is not the right time to play with the human mind.
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Our reader Reelix sent us a suggestion:
Just an idea!
Get people to submit fake “Help Japan” pages that are currently in use
scamming innocent people, then the community can decide what needs to
be done about them :)
Just a thought.