— We raised awareness of online safety by hacking Facebook (and getting naked)
Careful where you click
In collaboration with Jack Guy
Audio Visual, Viral, Experimental Design, Hacking
We now live in a digital era, with 2.5 billion people active online and over 14 trillion web pages. The convergence of the online and offline world creates a huge new platform for crime, both petty and organised. How about alerting people to the importance of online safety by actually committing an online ‘crime’ ourselves? We created a bit of malicious code disguised as a video that, once watched, shared itself on your Facebook (without your permission). Innocent viewers unwittingly propagated the video, causing a viral chain reaction through Facebook's network. Our ethical twist was to use this opportunity to spread an informative video that raised awareness of online safety, explaining why users should, in future, click carefully.
Exploiting people’s curiosity & Facebook’s security flaws
Clickjacking is a malicious technique that forces users to click unwittingly on something quite different from what they perceive. We used it to hide Facebook’s own social plug-in, so when someone thought they were clicking to play a video, they were actually sharing the link on their Facebook.
We needed a seductive disguise for our campaign: the story and the Facebook post thumbnail had to pique enough interest for a high click-through conversion. As we were launching the malicious website through our own social networks, we opted to fake a popular video website, Vinescope, that was already appearing legitimately on our feeds. With a bit of embarrassing nude dancing on webcam, we had our bait.
In 24 hours we gathered a total of 104,008 Facebook exposers, resulting in visitors from all over the world and a huge social buzz as it took over people’s newsfeeds
The viral spread was so successful, after 28 hours my domain was automatically blocked by Facebook spam prevention systems & removed from all newsfeeds.