Examples: [Collected via e-mail, September 2009]
NEW VIRUS ON FB using YOUR pictures. It says you've been tagged in a picture, wants you to click on a link to see it. Then hacks into YOUR computer & ALL YOUR ACCOUNTS including BANKING & other secure accounts. It DESTROYS YOUR COMPUTER. Once hacked into your comp; it sends e-mails to your friends telling them they have been TAGGED in pics & starts the process again. PLEASE RE-POST URGENT!
Origins: The FanCheck application for Facebook has created some problems for Facebook users, causing their walls (and other portions of Facebook) not to display properly. Contrary to warnings like the one reproduced above, however, FanCheck is not a "virus"
The Fan Check application is NOT a virus. It does, however, mess up your 'Wall' and other parts of Facebook — not by destroying information, but because it doesn't work properly your wall and other parts of Facebook won't display correctly. It doesn't do any damage itself.
The fix for the problems Fan Check [can] cause are simple — remove it, and everything will go back to normal.
Facebook has reviewed the application and hasn't found it to contain malware, according to a Facebook spokesman.
Many Facebook members have left messages in the application's page complaining that FanCheck disrupted their Facebook profiles and their PCs as well.
The developer challenges these accusations. "In general, applications can never damage your profile or PC unless they ask you to install something on your computer. FanCheck does not, and never has asked people to install anything on their computer, although it did require Adobe Flash to work," Arulkumarasan said.
For example, Facebook members seem to get tagged in a Fan Check album of some sort without their permission and without even having installed the application. That photo-tagging action is then broadcast to their friends' profiles via a thumbnail image titled "Fan Check Photos" with a message saying that the person in question has been tagged. This would appear to be a type of deceitful and spammy notification strategy that Facebook has tried to clamp down on because it annoys and confuses its members.
However, hackers have set up websites pretending to be about the "Facebook Fan Check Virus", but which really host fake anti-virus software which displays bogus warnings about the security of your computer in an attempt to get you to install fraudulent software and cough-up your credit card details.
The bogus warnings look near identical to previous fake anti-virus software attacks that we have seen in the
Last updated: 15 September 2009
Farnsworth, Amy. "Is Facebook Fan Check a Virus? Careful Whom You Ask." The Christian Science Monitor. 14 September 2009. Fu, Lily. "Is Facebook Fan Check App a Virus?" WLUK-TV [Green Bay]. 15 September 2009. Perez, Juan Carlos. "FanCheck Developer Defends App, Says It's Not Malware." Network World. 8 September 2009. Perez, Juan Carlos. "Sophos: Searches About Fan Check App Can Lead to Malware." PC World. 8 September 2009.