An additional rogue request is dispersion between gullible Twitter users, claiming to tell you how many hours you have exhausted on the network. The post all look pretty alike, and use a at present trending topic such as Richard Dawkins, Cheryl Cole landing the job of a judge on the US edition of “X Factor”, or it being Mother’s Day in the United States.
Richard Dawkins –> I have spent: 23.8 hours on Twitter! See how much you have: [LINK]
#zabecca –> I have spent: 20.9 hours on Twitter! See how much you have: [LINK]
Vidal Sassoon –> I have spent: 33.4 hours on Twitter! See how much you have: [LINK]
#5factsaboutmymom –> I have spent: 33.4 hours on Twitter! See how much you have: [LINK]
Still even if you may have seen one of your associates tweet out a message like this, you absolutely shouldn’t click on the link. It will take you to a rogue third-party application which asks your permission to attach with your Twitter profile.
If you do approve the app it will be able to post messages to Twitter in your name, see that you follow on Twitter, grab your Twitter name and avatar, and bring up to date your profile. Now, why on earth would you want to give a whole unfamiliar person the aptitude to do that? Unhappily, you may be so anxious to find out how many hours they have spent on Twitter (after all, your friends appear to have already been though the process) that you will approve the application.
At which point, the rogue application will tweet the aberrant message from your Twitter account. When I went through the procedure on a test Twitter account I run, I found that it tweeted out the message more than a dozen times in less than 30 seconds. You may not realize that this is happening; though, as the app is disturbing you with a message saying it is meting out your results. After some whirring away, it asks you to enter your email address to have your results sent to you.
End right there! (If you haven’t already). Are you critically leaving to give these total strangers access to your email address too? They already know your Twitter account name, and can post to your Twitter page – now they’ll be able to email you as well! Who knows what they might send you?
Their plan might be to send you spam, a Trojan horse, or a phishing attack. They even have the daring to say watch out for the communication in your spam folder! I don’t know what the scammers plan to spam out to you, and it could – of course – be weeks or months before they do, but if you want to find out more follow me on Twitter at @gcluley.
These sorts of rogue applications appear to be pop up more and more on Twitter, whereas before they were mostly seen only by Face book users. If you were averse enough to funding a rogue applications access to your Twitter account, revoke its rights immediately by going to the Twitter website and visiting Settings/Connections and revoking the offending app’s rights.
Don’t make it easy for scammers to make money in this way, and always exercise caution about which third party apps you allow to attach with your social networking accounts.