There is a link on Facebook offering to give away 1,000 iPads for free in memory of the passing of Apple’s co-founder Steve Jobs. Please ignore it, as it is a scam.
Cybercriminals are known to routinely piggyback online attacks on such major events. This scam surfaced within hours of Steve Job’s name being announced.
The link takes you a link to a webpage that encourages you to share the message with your Facebook friends. It adds the phrase “Thank you Steve,” “Thank you Steve from (city),” or “RIP Steve,” depending on whether you are hoping to get an iPad 2, limited edition iPhone, or black MacBook, respectively.
The webpage also explains that time is limited, and there are only a small number of free devices remaining. The hope is to fool you into rushing into the scam without thinking.
Scams trying to make money from Jobs’ death will likely be around for the next few weeks, at least. Please stay away from them and try to limit your link-clicking to reputable websites that don’t claim they will give you something for free.
The scammers’ goal is to drive more traffic towards certain sites. This is how the scammer earns his or her money: a commission for every survey completed, every product purchased, and/or every account compromised. They also use them to spread malware and obtain personal information.
As I’ve recommended before, if you see a scam like this one, report it. Then go check your own Wall to make sure you’re not spreading the scam; the sooner you clean it up and unlike the page, the better. You can even contact Facebook Security if you’d like to.