VB2018 paper: Uncovering the wholesale industry of social media fraud: from botnet to bulk reseller panels

Posted by   Martijn Grooten on   Nov 6, 2018

On the day of the 2018 US mid-term elections, there will be few who are not aware of the activity of botnets on social media and how these, allegedly, have tried to influence elections. But social media fraud doesn't just restrict itself to elections – fake Facebook, Twitter and Instagram likes and followers have long been sold to vain social media users.

In a paper presented at VB2018 in Montreal, co-written with her colleague Olivier Bilodeau, GoSecure researcher Masarah Paquet-Clouston looked at the subject of social media fraud and detailed the full supply chain behind it: from the IoT botnet used to generate and manage the fake accounts to the reseller panels where people can buy likes or followers.

Today, we publish Masarah's paper in both HTML and PDF format.

7-industry_rep_3.PNGPotential supply chain for the social media fraud (SMF) industry.

 

For more on this subject, watch the VB2015 presentation by Olivier Bilodeau (then at ESET) on the the Linux/Moose botnet used in this kind of fraud.

twitter.png
fb.png
linkedin.png
hackernews.png
reddit.png

 

Latest posts:

VB2019 paper: A study of Machete cyber espionage operations in Latin America

At VB2019 in London a group of researchers from the Stratosphere Lab at the Czech Technical University in Prague presented a paper in which they analysed and dissected the cyber espionage activities of an APT group in Latin America through the…

VB2019 paper: The push from fiction for increased surveillance, and its impact on privacy

In a paper presented at VB2019 in London, researchers Miriam Cihodariu (Heimdal Security) and Andrei Bogdan Brad (Code4Romania) looked at how surveillance is represented in fiction and how these representations are shaping people's attitudes to…

VB2019 paper: Oops! It happened again!

At VB2019 in London industry veterans Righard Zwienenberg and Eddy Willems took a detailed look at the relationship between past and current cyber threats. Today, we publish both their paper and the recording of their presentation.

Job vacancy at VB: Security Evangelist

Virus Bulletin is recruiting for a person to be the public face of the company

VB2019 video: Thwarting Emotet email conversation thread hijacking with clustering

At VB2019 in London, ZEROSPAM researchers Pierre-Luc Vaudry and Olivier Coutu discussed how email clustering could be used to detect malicious Emotet emails that hijacked existing email threads. Today we publish the recording of their presentation.

We have placed cookies on your device in order to improve the functionality of this site, as outlined in our cookies policy. However, you may delete and block all cookies from this site and your use of the site will be unaffected. By continuing to browse this site, you are agreeing to Virus Bulletin's use of data as outlined in our privacy policy.