Porn spammers are making increasing use of social networks and micro-blogging platforms deliver hardcore content, according to researchers at BitDefender.
Fifteen percent of Twitter traffic is porn spam, according to Alexandru Catalin Cosoi, senior anti-spam and anti-phishing researcher at BitDefender. On Twitter, porn spammers register accounts, post up a provocative image as their avatar, follow unsuspecting Twitter users and begin sending shortened URLs that link to pornographic material.
On Facebook and MySpace, porn spam accounts for seven percent and 10% of total traffic, respectively, said Cosoi.
Not all porn spam contains links to inappropriate images or Web sites. Some porn spam contains links that facilitate the connection for downloading of malware. Such malware can be activated at the point of infection, then wait dormant for instructions to activate at a later date or hide until activated by a set of keywords.
“There’s always going to be malware that makes use of spam, especially porn,” said Cosoi. “They’re not looking to infect people’s computers with a virus, malware or Trojans. They actually have a business and they are using spam to promote it.”