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article image10,000 Facebook users are infected with 'color change' malware

By Walter McDaniel     Aug 8, 2014 in Technology
New reports from Security Company Cheetah Mobile state that the Facebook color change app has reappeared and 10,000 or more users are now infected.
Scam artists allegedly ask users to download an app which lets them change the color of their Facebook page. Of course it does not do this but instead directs the user to pages which the hacker can use to mine data from. Unknowing users give their data away to cyber-criminals who sell it or use it to break into other accounts. Cheetah Mobile brought this news out recently in a post on how to fix or avoid problems with it.
Since this particular piece of malware has resurfaced several times it is getting more attention now. Multiple versions of the app are up as well so watch out for them.
So why do hackers target Facebook? While there are many reasons two stand out among the others: popularity and ease of malicious code introduction. With these factors combined it has become an extremely popular place for cyber-criminals.
Despite many articles on falling popularity it is still one of the biggest social networks. Millions of users mean at least thousands of hacker targets. While many believe this will change down the road at the moment it still has millions of daily users.
Candy Crush and other Facebook games are a major reason that the site is so popular. At the same time the open nature of gaming and apps there makes it a target. Hackers can put anything they want in an app, so they put code which hijacks your browser to a fake site which prompts you to put in personal information, AKA a "phishing" site.
Hackers make huge money by selling the data they collect from "phishing" sites online. Therefore companies such as Cheetah Mobile have a reason to watch for these events since sales of their own virus-cleaning products rely on events such as these.
Since the problem is so wide-spread many names in media have released tips on avoiding these, such as CBS. Users should avoid downloading any app that they are unfamiliar with. Never try to win anything if a contest or event asks you to install something or give up personal information. Even simply not clicking on an unusual pop-up can help you avoid these problems.
More about Facebook, Hacking, Cybercrime, Technology, Phishing