A new scam is circulating on Facebook Messenger in the form of a video link that looks like it was sent by a close friend, KMBC reports.
The message contains a video link and a surprised-face emoji and appears to be from a Facebook friend. Clicking on the link, however, redirects the user to a malicious site based on their operating system, type of browser and geographical location. Those pages offer fake installations, videos or downloads that can lead to a virus that ruins your computer or phone, according to warnings issued by Avira, CSIS Security Group and Kaspersky Lab.
Google Chrome users are redirected to an adware-ridden fake YouTube channel and Firefox users are taken to fake Flash Player installations, according to KMBC.
The malicious software fills your phone and computer with spam, potentially steals your banking details, and can trigger your profile to pass on the fake message without your permission.
Facebook advised users in a statement to GoodHousekeeping to get in touch with them directly if they believe they’ve been targeted by a scam
“We maintain a number of automated systems to help stop harmful links and files from appearing on Facebook and in Messenger. If we suspect your computer is infected with malware, we will provide you with a free anti-virus scan from our trusted partners. In this instance, we have also reported the bad browser extensions to the appropriate parties. We share tips on how to stay secure and links to these scanners on facebook.com/help,” the company said.
To protect yourself from the scam, be cautious when receiving Facebook messages and do not click on any links that seem suspicious.