Friday, June 24, 2011

I came up with a new word today: faceboob

(v) to faceboob (someone): to earn money off the the humans' tendency to be curious, as well as to their natural tendency to trust their friends - specifically when using the social networks. Example use: "John Doe was faceboobed today."

Now, enough words, lets get to colorful pictures!

Prologue



You see this:

active_window_screenshot2011-06-23,23:44:06

Oh, boy! Aha! Free Boobz! Especially since one of your friends (or more!) shared this. Gotta be good!

Let's get another browser. But first lets investigate a bit - the link looks like an URL shortener.

active_window_screenshot2011-06-24,00:08:14

Yeah, it is chinese url shortener FTW! Better yet, if you go to home page it talks about a link being a spam and being deleted. This already rings the alarm bells, but let's see further - let's open up the link in the browser that is logged out of Facebook and see what happens.

active_window_screenshot2011-06-23,23:55:27

Whoa!!! Free boobz are just one click away! They need to verify the age - of course. Gonna be something really juicy. Better yet, the button is also helpfully localized. Thank you my friends! When we click this link, we get a popup to login to facebook.
Cool - so this is how it appeared in my friend feed. I'm the one with the OCD - the others simply tried to verify their age... oops. Anyway, lets close this annoying popup, I am not going to login anyway. Let's pretend that all happened in the background and see what happens further.

active_window_screenshot2011-06-23,23:56:05

Whoa! To verify my age I am going to get a chance to win an iPad ? Unbelievable! I am a lucky man today! iPads and iBoobz are falling from the sky! Let's click! I want a MacBook Air though - because I already have an iPad.

active_window_screenshot2011-06-23,23:47:30

The question asks something like "is it possible to play the videos on the MacBook Pro?" First, what a stupid question. Of course even the kid knows it is possible. Second, you are supposed to ask about the MacBook Air - I don't want a MacBook Pro!
Anyway, let's answer "Ja" - and go forward, towards the free gear and free boobz!
(the eye notices something in the right-top corner, but quickly dismisses it as uninteresting).

active_window_screenshot2011-06-23,23:47:36

Ahhah. Now the top-right thing starts to make sense. 1 euro for SMS sent, 1 euro for SMS received. This is an IQ test - so I enter my phone number, such that they send me an SMS and charge 1 euro. Brilliant, lets stick in some random number that is not a valid phone# and move on. I guess this is the time for the real age verification.

active_window_screenshot2011-06-23,23:53:36

Congratulations! You've been charged 1 euro for receiving an SMS! Now please also help us charge you another euro for sending an SMS! I start to be a bit unhappy about the whole situation - 2 euros for boobz aint really free anymore! I start to suspect the evil plot in this. They want to rip me off - let's go back to the first tab where they had at least the background pic.

An unpleasant surprise awaits me back there, there's no flirt at all on that page anymore. Instead, it coldly notifies:

active_window_screenshot2011-06-23,23:47:07

(Note that the text "Not completed" periodically changes into "checking..." - which makes a great illusion that the code *actually* checks whether you have completed the darn survey or not). The boobz are in the background - go and complete this survey, ASAP!

Well, there is a slight chance of a bug. And the page admits it. It offers to complete another survey if this survey does not bring the keys to the kingdom. Let's go and see about the iPad - two is better than one, after all... This one starts in a rather cheerful manner:

active_window_screenshot2011-06-23,23:44:58

It prompts me to select my favourite color! Yay! I prefer black.

active_window_screenshot2011-06-23,23:45:07

Wow, now is the real quiz: it asks which icon corresponds to the Facetime. That was easy. *click*

active_window_screenshot2011-06-23,23:45:17


Meeeeeh. This smiling lady promises me a charge of another 1 euro, and still no boobz!

I think I am going to give up here - no free boobz today. I'll better go read slashdot.

The practical takeaways from this little exercise, to avoid being faceboobed, remember these three simple rules:

  1. There is no free lunch boobz.

  2. Be bear aware! Always check where the links lead, even if it is your friend posting them.
  3. Use condoms.Always check them in a separate browser that is fully patched and is NOT logged into the site that you got the link from.



Remember, you are the target too.

And, unlike the computers, your antivirus is not auto-updated.

Keep this in mind.

update: oh, I forgot. When closing the browser, I get this popup:

active_window_screenshot2011-06-23,23:54:09

Now, this is called a plain greed, my friends.

Don't leave your mobile numbers to these folks. They are too greedy to rip the money off you.

And if you really really wanna boobz - here they are. (warning: age restricted, may be NSFW for you): not a faceboobed link.

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