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SCAM: 'Mermaid Found Inside a Shark' Video

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As shared on Facebook, April 14, 2014:
Uncut Video - Rare! Mermaid Found Inside a Shark!

Netlore Archive: Viral social media blurbs promote a 'rare, uncut video' supposedly showing the carcass of a mermaid found inside a shark.

Via Facebook

Description: Viral postings
Circulating since: April 2014
Status: SCAM (see details below)

Analysis: As in previous examples of Facebook clickjacking scams, users who click on the link to view the advertised "Mermaid Found Inside a Shark" video are redirected to an external site -- in this case, a bogus YouTube page -- and asked to share the video before viewing it (which is how the scam spreads). In most cases users are then asked to take an online survey (for which the scammers are paid by a third party) or are redirected to some other promotional site to exploit users' page views. In some cases, malicious software may be downloaded to the victim's computer.

More often than not the promised video doesn't exist, though in this case after jumping through all the scammer's hoops users may find themselves viewing an actual video consisting of years-old footage of a fake dead mermaid supposedly found washed up on a beach.

Stop and think before clicking, and especially before sharing suspicious links with your friends.

More examples of clickjacking/survey scams:
"Giant Snake Swallows Up a Zookeeper" Video
"16 People Dead in Roller Coaster Accident" Video
"Girl Killed Herself Live on Cam" Video
"Hungry Bear Tear Women into Pieces" Video
"You Won't Believe What This Pregnant Girl Does!" Video
"Dead Mermaid Discovered in Florida" Video
"Will Smith Pronounced Dead" Video

Resources:

How to Protect Yourself from Clickjacking Attacks
About.com: Internet/Network Security

How to Keep Your Facebook Account Secure
Facebook Help Center

How to Spot a Facebook Survey Scam
Facecrooks.com, 6 February 2011

Giant Snakes Eating Zookeepers and Unwatchable Videos
Sophos Naked Security, 13 June 2012


Last updated 04/14/14

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