It didn’t take long for hackers to take advantage of the social networking site: pinterest.com.
If you’re not familiar with Pinterest, it’s a site where you can create a “board” and you then “pin” video or graphic image files of anything that interests you.
Friends, family, acquaintances, can re-pin your pinned interests and so on…
Recently, cybercriminals have been posting images of Starbuck’s gift cards and free Coach wallets and purses (handbags as my wife prefers).
The potential victim will have to visit a particular site to claim their “prize”.
The scam begins when you visit that site, you’re redirected to a website that first requires you to re-pin the image, so they can spread their “generosity” further, then clicking on a link to a survey site – which is a scam.
Cybercriminals are very adept at scams like these. They know that by asking you to re-pin their pin, they believe that people you know will help spread their scam.
Some of the redirects are to CPA (cost-per-action) sites where the cybercriminals are paid to drive traffic to these sites. Other sites the unsuspecting victim is redirected to asks them to install toolbars, backgrounds and other seemingly “harmless” utilities. Cybercriminals also get paid for these installations as pay-per-installs.
Some redirects we followed actually asked for personal information. We believe this could eventually be used to steal identities which are then sold to other cybercriminals.
People always ask us why hackers hack. This is one method they have of making money. While this method may not directly infect or attempt to infect your computer, it feeds the cybercriminals with more income.
If you’ve followed any of these, please share your experience below. If you know someone who is using Pinterest.com, please let them know about this scam.