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Whole Foods Warns Shoppers of Facebook Scam

On April 2, 2010, Facebook Inc. cautioned users about a scam that evolved in the first week of April 2010 that has targeted the shoppers of Whole Foods (USA). The scam promises to give a $500 gift card, but installs malware that infects the user's system.

The scam is spreading rapidly by means of Facebook via "fan pages" having names such as "Whole Foods FREE $500 Gift Card! Only available for 36 hours!" and "Whole Foods Market Free $500 Gift Card Limited - first 12,000 fans only".

The fan page directs the users of Facebook to add it as a fan, therefore increasing awareness about that webpage through the Facebook networks of users. It then urges users to fill a credit review as well as some other forms requesting personal details. After that, the scam uses a kind of malware to hack into users' systems and details they have furnished is left susceptible to malicious attacks.As per security experts, it is still not clear who is behind the scams or whether any user details have been hacked.

Spokeswoman of Whole Foods, Libba Letton stated that the scams appeared first on April 1, 2010, as per the news published by cnet news on April 2, 2010. The firm, since then, has been working in collaboration with users to recognize and take down the scammed fan pages, and Facebook assures that it is working on methods to automate these scam groups' flagging.

Letton stated that all through April 1, 2010 and the morning of April 2, 2010, they have been cautioning users every time they come across new ones; moreover, they shut them down. Moreover, she stated that if they conduct any contest or gift card offers, they will come only from the company's own site.

In addition to this, Whole Foods has also used its Twitter account to respond to people tweeting in regard to this scam or who have given their opinions regarding this, giving answers such as "It's a scam, unaffiliated and unauthorized by us! Please help us report these pages so Facebook can shut them down." Moreover, they are planning to come up with such a warning on their Facebook fan page as well.

In addition, the firm suggests that users should follow the Facebook Security fan page and immediately inform about such scams in case they encounter them.

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