Two new malware strains have been quickly making the rounds on Facebook, giving members another good reason to exercise caution when using the popular social network.
PandaLabs researchers have identified the exploits as being a Trojan called Asprox.N and a malicious link attack called Lolbot.Q.
Asprox.N is being distributed through spoofed emails that appear to be a message from Facebook stating that the user's account has been used for SPAM distribution, and that the account's login credentials have been changed for security reasons.
The email instructs targeted members to retrieve their new password by opening an attached file called "Facebook_details.exe" that is designed to look like a Microsoft Word document.
The file actually contains malicious code designed to engage the victim's computer in a mass SPAM campaign. Files with the ".exe" extension are designed to execute a file, and should always act as a giant red flag.
The other exploit, Lolbot.Q, is a hotlink being dispersed via instant message platforms. When a victim clicks the link, malware designed to hijack their Facebook account is downloaded and the user is then locked out of their profile.
Targets are then lured with the promise of prizes if they fill out a questionnaire that includes providing their cell phone number, and are told that doing so will reactivate their Facebook account. The victims are later charged $11.60 per week on their phone bill.
Both exploits play on the probability that targets will go to unusual lengths to regain access to their coveted Facebook accounts without first stopping to question the nature of the instructions they have received.
"Once again cybercriminals are using social engineering to trick victims and infect them with malware. Given the increasing popularity of social media, it is no surprise that it is being exploited to lure victims," PandaLabs' technical director Luis Corrons stated.