Facebook Spam has a conversion rate of 47% – meaning that nearly half of the people who see a spam message clicked on the link to read it. That finding comes from Sean Sullivan, a security advisor at antivirus firm F-Secure who’s been researching social networking spam, as reported in an article in Information Week.
The good news? People are learning fast and becoming less likely to click on Facebook or Twitter spam. The bad news is that spam attacks will continue because it only takes a few people who fall for it to make it worthwhile for spammers.
The spam spreads through compromised or fake Facebook accounts, allowing the spam to spread through status updates, chats and private messages. Email spammers have figured out how to masking their emails so they look like Facebook messages in their efforts to increase their click-through rates, as variation of a phishing scam.
Facebook isn’t taking this lying down, they are seriously and aggressively filtering to prevent the scourge, but keeping a watchful eye on the 550 million Facebook users isn’t easy, and given end users role in spam distribution, it isn’t likely to be eradicated soon.
Another article by F-Secure suggests 3 ways Facebook could fight spam, including identifying behaviors that indicate a user has a tendency to spam, placing a “report spammers” link on every profile, limiting access to who can post to a “wall”, increased education to their users about identifying, deleting and reporting spam, and using image filtering technology to identify images that recur in spam to rout out the spam – and the spammers.
Are you part of the problem, or part of the solution?
Every user has a role to play in protecting the online ecosystem. Knowing how to spot spam and block it’s perpetuation is the responsibility of all users. Do your part, learn how to Spot the Spam.