–           Users receive a Twitter direct message with a link to a supposed video of U.S. President Barack Obama punching a man

–       The message includes a fake Facebook link to steal users’ Twitter credentials and download a computer worm 

PandaLabs, Panda Security’s anti-malware laboratory, has detected a new Twitter spam campaign that may compromise user security. Users receive a direct message on Twitter, which contains the text “Check out Obama punch a guy in the face for calling him a nigger”, and a malicious link to a fake Facebook page.

If the user clicks the link, they are taken to a bogus Facebook page where they are prompted to submit their Twitter login details. However, if the user enters their credentials, the malware will hijack their account in order to send the same malicious message to all of their contacts.

Then, the user is taken to a website that displays a fake YouTube video set against a fake Facebook background. This time, the victim is asked to update a ‘YouTube player’ to watch the video. As is usual in this type of scam, if the user clicks on the ‘Install’ button, they will find themselves downloading the Koobface.LP worm, which will infect their computer and steal all of their personal data.


“This attack exploits the two most popular social networking sites, Facebook and Twitter, to trick users into believing they are viewing a trusted site”, said Luis Corrons, technical director of PandaLabs. “It also relies on its victims’ curiosity by using a scandalous story involving U.S. President Barack Obama and racism. Cyber-criminals know people are curious by nature and take advantage of this to trick users and infect them with their creations.”

Twitter Direct Messages, Yet Another Technique to Spread Malware Infections

This is just the latest example of a cyber-scam that uses Twitter direct messages to spread. Users’ accounts receive dozens of them every day, with malicious links and enticing messages like: “What exactly do you think you’re doing on this video clip”, “Hello this guy is saying bad rumors about u…”, “Did you see this pic of you?”, etc., etc.

“Never, ever, click the links within the text of those messages as they could infect your computer”, explained Corrons. “Every time you receive a direct message you should check with the sender that they have knowingly sent it to you. Make sure it has not been automatically forwarded to you from a hacked account. As a general rule, always keep your antivirus software up to date and be wary of messages offering sensational videos or unusual stories as, in 99 percent of cases they are designed to compromise user security.”