Online scams taking advantage of the ongoing Japanese tragedy are popping up daily. The latest one spotted is perpetuated on YouTube, where users go to search for videos that will give them insight into what’s going on.
Stories of against-all-odds, miraculous survival usually follow natural disasters and are usually pushed out by media to balance out all the negativity that follows such events and because users are much more interested in personal stories than in plain facts and numbers.
News sites and other media are currently following stories like that, and it’s only natural that viewers should be hitting the Internet for more. YouTube seems like the most obvious first step in the search for heartwarming videos, and scammers are predictably taking advantage of that fact.
According to GFI, this particular scam lures the users with a promise of “miracle stories” from survivors of the earthquake, but the video is supposedly hosted on for other sites because of problems with copyright.
The first two offered links land the users in the midst of a typical survey scam, where they are urged to complete a survey in order to access the content. The remaining two links try to get the users to install Hotbar (an offer engine) and some other software in return for seeing the wanted content.
Once again, users are urged to search for news on reputable news sites.