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Facebook and Twitter criticised over iPad 3 scams

False promises of free iPad 3 units circulating widely on social networks

A security expert has criticised Facebook, Twitter and other social networks for letting scammers lure unsuspecting surfers by using the as-yet-unannounced iPad 3 as bait. Follow the Apple iPad 3 launch live with our liveblog from the event: Live: Apple iPad 3 launch.

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Graham Cluley, senior security consultant at Sophos, writing on the company's Naked Security blog drew attention to the large number of scams that are already promising the iPad 3 to get social network members to fill in surveys.

Apple is expected to announce a third-generation iPad at an event in San Francisco next week and as Cluley points out, scammers used similar tactics before the announcement of the iPhone 4S.

A quick search of Facebook proves his point - there are dozens of results for the search term 'free iPad 3' and the same is true of Twitter.

"As Apple hasn't even announced the existence of an iPad 3, these posts and pages (some of which have existed for months) are clearly up to no good," said Cluley.

"It would be great to see social networks like Facebook and Twitter do more to clean up such clearly dubious activity, to better protect their userbase."

If you join one of the Facebook groups you'll be encouraged to follow links to websites where you'll be asked to fill out surveys to be in with a chance of getting your iPad 3.

However, there's no chance that you'll actually get one - after all, you're being promised a device that doesn't even officially exist yet - and the data collected from the survey will merely be sold on to unscrupulous advertisers and marketers.


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