Just when you think that you have heard about some of the most clever scams online, cybercrooks amaze us all again as they introduce their very own solution to online survey scams. The people responsible for survey scams are not only still tricking computer users through the use of their annoying online surveys, but they are further deceiving computer users with a script that supposedly banishes 'horrible surveys'.
Researchers from Sunbelt Software recently uncovered a mischievous survey scam found on the script site Userscripts(dot)org. The script claims that it is able to bypass 'horrible' online surveys that limit the download of 'free' software or files. If you have ever attempted to view a certain video or download something for free on a site that seemed suspicious, you may have run across a few online surveys that you must complete in order to download or access the free 'stuff' as shown in Figure 1 below. Many of these sites that push these types of online surveys are torrent downloads, sites that harbor illegal warez (pirated software) or a site that promises something too good to be true such as getting a free Apple iPad.
Figure 1. Online survey popup to complete before download starts - Sunbelt Blog
Users who may have wanted to try the 'online survey bypass script' were probably surprised to find out that attempting to download the script actually prompts an online survey of its own. Basically, the script that is supposed to banish online surveys wants you to complete another survey to 'continue' or download the actual script. Most times these surveys can never be completed and you never get to download, view, or watch what you were originally promised.
An experienced computer user would immediately become suspicious once they noticed a popup survey keeps them from downloading a script that STOPS surveys. The scammers already know this but they also know that it actually still works on novice users which is why they continue to use these surveys for a quick promotional lead that leads to a big payday. You can think of this as the cybercrook's way of tricking you twice in one shot.
Just in the past few weeks, several scams that lead to bogus online surveys found on social networks such as Facebook which may be an indication that they are rapidly increasing. These popular online survey scams are even found on the 'test a new iPad or iPhone 4 and keep it' scam. Computer users must remember that these surveys are designed to steal personal information, obtain your cell phone number/email/address, or enter you into a bogus promotion that sends you spam.
Have you ever been disappointed after completing a popup online survey and you do not get what was originally promised to you?