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Another day, another scam based on the content delivery system Steam. This time round, it’s a rather nice looking website offering up lots of free games in the form of l4d2dl(dot)com:

L4D fakeout
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“Download now: 100% Free”, says the big Download Now button. Elsewhere, the site puts up nice “All Access” banners and down the left hand side you can see lots more games up for grabs, along with embedded Youtube videos playing trailers for all the titles in the middle of each page.

Of course, it’s all about to go horribly wrong.

The first clue that something isn’t quite right here is this:


“Cracked client”? That can’t be good (although clicking the button does nothing, as there’s no download there anyway. This already looks like a cookie cutter website designed to extract marketing information from you, doesn’t it?)

Should you visit the site with AdBlock Plus switched on, you’ll see the following message:

Blocked site
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In order to “keep the content of this website free” you have to view the adverts – we’re about to view a content gateway, aren’t we? Cleverly, anyone thinking they can get around the content lockout by switching off user style sheets will see this instead:


Yes, they really want you to see some adverts. This is what the end-user will see if they do as the website demands:

fill this in

It’s survey time! You’ll need to fill in forms, sign up to offers and get ready for marketing action galore in order to grab your “free games”. Of course, given that the site itself doesn’t have live download links on it and claims to have an extremely dubious “cracked” version of Steam up for grabs (it isn’t) I don’t think anyone signing their lives away to offers will get anything decent back in return.

The site is a recent creation, registered to someone in China and is already picking up a few reviews of the “avoid” variety on SiteAdvisor. I think I’d have to agree with them…
Christopher Boyd