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With the amount of hacking and malware attacks that we have seen in the past, it is always good to have some knowledge about how things work in the cyber domain. Besides you never know when you might be a victim. That being said, a fake advertisement has now reportedly led some users searching for "Amazon" on Thanksgiving to a scam website. This happened just before the Black Friday shopping frenzy.
"Some Google users searching for "Amazon" on Thanksgiving were shown a phony ad that redirected to a scam website, one day before the biggest shopping day of the year," CBS News reported late on Friday. "The advertisement appeared at the top of search results on Google for an unknown number of users for at least part of the day on Thursday," the report added.
CBS affiliate WHP discovered that users who clicked the Amazon link were redirected to a URL of an app running on a Facebook page. The redirect was used to bypass Google's automated scam detection tools. The app then redirected users to a support site which was said to be run by Microsoft's support team. A message was also displayed saying the computer was infected with malware.
Meanwhile, the search engine giant has said that the advertisement violated its policies and has been removed. "This was an abuse of our platform. We strictly prohibit advertising of illegal activity and have removed these ads and suspended the account," a Google representative was quoted as saying.
The app which redirected users to a scam site purporting to be run by Microsoft's support team with a message saying the computer was infected with malware, according to CBS. However, the site's URL suggested that it was not affiliated with Microsoft.