Reblogs for 20100907

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  • ALERT: Massive New Survey Worm Spreading On Facebook

    -Warning Icon-A group of developers have found a loophole in Facebook’s application Platform which enables them to automatically post messages to a user’s wall. This loophole doesn’t require any action by the user, it simply posts to the user’s wall the moment they load the application. Right now the messages being spread state “I thought this survey stuff was GARBAGE but i just went on a shopping spree at walmart thanks to FB”. This is a scam, do not click on any of the applications!

    This happens to be one of the fastest spreading scams we’ve seen on Facebook to date, and also one of the largest security glitches in the Facebook Platform. While we’re not aware of any viruses that result from the system, it appears to be the standard offers system which is driving this scam. In other words, once users enter their email, they are prompted to complete an offer. There’s also a risk of having your phone number charged by entering it on the form, however we haven’t confirmed that yet.

    The clear message is this: do not click on any of the links if your friends post it. It will immediately post to your wall. This is fairly widespread as there are numerous applications that are spreading the scam. There appears to be thousands of applications that have been used as part of this scam, which will make it much more time consuming for Facebook to shut down the scammers.

    We will update this post as we get more information. Right now there are countless applications that are being used. It would take us too long to list every application, however you can see all the people being impacted here. As we mentioned before: do not click any of the links in these messages. Also, be sure to share this with your friends so they don’t fall for the scam as well!

    The spammers have also figured out a way to automatically message your friends (as seen in the image below).

  • ALERT: Facicons Is Spreading Facebook Emoticon Spam

    -Error Icon-Want to add emoticons to your Facebook status update? There are a million applications to accomplish this (see our list of Facebook emoticons apps), however Facicons now appears to be spreading spam on Facebook rather than friendly smiles. When you update your status with Facicons, there’s a message which states “I’ve added smileys to this status update. Wanna see them? Go to”. It then prompts you to install the application, thus continuing the cycle of emoticon spam. While we previously thought this application was friendly, it only appears to be good at spreading spam.

    Right now we’re seeing thousands of people using this application to try and add emoticons. The bottom line is this: don’t install Facicons. There are plenty of other applications that will work at positing emoticons and this isn’t one of them. Just search for “I’ve added smilies” on Facebook (or click here) to see the numerous people who are spaming their friends with this application. You can see a screenshot of the spam spreading through status updates.

    Make sure to share this article with your friends so they don’t install the application.

    Thanks to Vaidas Pilkauskas for the tip!

    Facicon Spam Screenshot

  • New evidence that fat cells are not just dormant storage depots for calories

    Scientists are reporting new evidence that the fat tissue — far from being a dormant storage depot for surplus calories — is an active organ that sends chemical signals to other parts of the body, perhaps increasing the risk of heart attacks, cancer, and other diseases.

    They are reporting discovery of 20 new hormones and other substances not previously known to be secreted into the blood by human fat cells and verification that fat secretes dozens of hormones and other chemical messengers. Their study appears in ACS’ monthly Journal of Proteome Research.

    Maastricht University scientist Anja Rosenow and colleagues note that excess body fat can contribute to heart disease, diabetes, cancer and other diseases. Many people once thought that fat cells were inert storage depots for surplus calories. But studies have established that fat cells can secrete certain hormones and other substances much like other organs in the body. Among those hormones is leptin, which controls appetite, and adiponectin, which makes the body more sensitive to insulin and controls blood sugar levels. However, little is known about most of the proteins produced by the billions of fat cells in the adult body.

    The scientists identified 80 different proteins produced by the fat cells. These include six new proteins and 20 proteins that have not been previously detected in human fat cells. The findings could pave the way for a better understanding of the role that hormone-secreting fat cells play in heart disease, diabetes, and other diseases.

    Reference:Identification of novel human adipocyte secreted proteins by using SGBS cells,” J. Proteome Res., DOI: 10.1021/pr100621g, August 3, 2010

    More info: American Chemical Society news