After reading an article about the dangers of ransomware, Vicky had a question: “After reading your warning about Ransomware this morning I am wondering about the links shared on Facebook. Sometimes I don’t know if they\’re safe to click on. Would the videos and other links have Ransomware link?”
Good question Vicky. It’s possible that any link might lead you to a site that contains ransomware. The posts most likely to contain ransomware are hoax stories like this one.
Now there are so many clues this is suspicious it’s hard to list them all. Stallone is spelled wrong. So is truly. It says Fox Breaking News instead of the actual website Foxnews.com.
In a case like this, you could just not click the link and instead go to the Facebook Page or the website for the news organization in question yourself. Another great way to fall victim to malware is fake contests.
In an article earlier this year, I talked about how to spot a fake contest. Click here to learn more.
When it comes to FB links, you have to use your judgment as much as you do anywhere else. Experience on FB should help teach you what legitimate links look like. Always be wary of the super-sensational.
As for videos, if you just play a video from Facebook, it shouldn’t cause you a problem.
Another thing to look out for: If you click that link and see a notification that you must like a page or download an app to view.
Or if suddenly you’re a winner in a contest you didn’t enter.
If you see anything like that, just close your browser.
Your number one weapon is to use your good judgment. It might take 10 extra seconds to type in a web address or go to a Facebook page, but it could save you problems later. Really look at what you are reading and sharing. Most fishy things tend to actually look kind of fish. Also, make sure you have up-to-date security software. And if you see your friends sharing a suspicious link, call them on it.