Fear of "Facebook Fan Check Virus" drives users to scareware

September 08, 2009 Sophos Press Release

IT security and data protection firm Sophos has issued a warning about uncontrolled rumours of a new threat called the "Facebook Fan Check Virus" that are spreading across the internet.

Scare stories of a new rogue Facebook application called "Fan Check" are driving computer users to search the net for more information, and sending them to websites hosting malicious code.

Although no evidence has yet been forthcoming that the Facebook's third-party Fan Check application is malicious, rumours of it being a virus are widespread across Twitter, blogs and message boards.

Facebook fans who use search engines for confirmation are being directed to websites infected with fake anti-virus software that puts their PCs and laptops in danger and risk having their personal financial details stolen.

"A word to the wise - be careful what you search for when scouring the net for information. It is the fear of the application that is leading internet users into danger. As online rumours spread and continue to scare innocent Facebook users, thousands of people are turning to the internet for more information - leading them straight into the honey trap set up by cybercriminals," explained Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at Sophos. "Once directed to a malicious website, bogus anti-virus software is planted onto your system and is designed to defraud you and take over your computer."