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Bitdefender Uncovers AI Scams Targeting Facebook Users

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Cybersecurity company ‘Bitdefender’ has exposed a series of AI scams aimed at deceiving Facebook users by presenting counterfeit artificial intelligence (AI) features and services.

In recent times, scammers have been taking over Facebook Pages and transforming them to resemble genuine AI services, such as OpenAI’s Sora for video creation and DALL-E for image creation. These imposters then advertise on Facebook, offering viewers the chance to access experimental AI research and products. After attracting followers to these Pages, the scammers post AI-generated content to create an illusion of legitimacy. They then instruct the Page’s followers to download supposed experimental AI software, which, in reality, is malware including Rilide, Vidar, IceRAT, and Nova, designed to steal user data.

AI has emerged as a pivotal topic in the tech industry, with millions of people globally engaging with tools like ChatGPT and DALL-E. This growing interest has become a target for hackers identified by Bitdefender, who are exploiting users’ curiosity. Notably, one of the most prominent Facebook Pages discovered by Bitdefender, Midjourney AI, amassed 1.2 million followers before being shut down by Facebook in March 2024. However, similar Pages quickly emerged after the takedown, illustrating a continuous battle against these scams.

Bitdefender observed that since their investigation began, several Facebook Pages attempted to impersonate Midjourney, with some also removed. The latest impersonation occurred when cybercriminals took over the original Page, resulting in over 637,000 followers on the fraudulent profile by March 26.

Instances where users were directed to download software raised numerous red flags. Bitdefender noted that users were provided with Google Drive or Dropbox links, and a closer inspection of the Pages would reveal their lack of genuine association with the companies they purported to represent.

To safeguard against such scams, Bitdefender advises users to remain vigilant, refrain from downloading software from unverified sources, and enable multi-factor authentication to enhance account security. Additionally, users should be aware that legitimate tech companies do not use Facebook Pages to offer access to experimental features and never share third-party links for software downloads.

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