Internet

Tech support scams have become top phishing threats, report says

The firm said it blocked more than 12.3 million tech support URLs for 13 consecutive weeks between July and September this year.   | Photo Credit: Reuters

Tech support scams, that often arrive as pop-up notifications alerting users of a compromised network, has become a popular phishing method, according to security firm Norton LifeLock.

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The firm said it blocked more than 12.3 million tech support URLs for 13 consecutive weeks between July and September this year.

These attacks are effective because they prey on consumers’ fear, uncertainty and doubt to trick recipients into believing they face a dire cybersecurity threat. Moreover, the alerts are cleverly disguised using major tech companies, the report noted.

The firm also observed other targeted attacks that are becoming rampant. For example, a new phishing campaign has been specifically designed to obtain gaming players’ login credentials and two-factor authentication information with the intent to steal and sell rare, high-value virtual items like gaming goods.

Another popular phishing campaign targeted bank customers with a carbon copy of the real banking homepage to trick them into entering their credentials. Hackers are also targeting gift cards this festive season as they have lower security than credit cards and aren’t tied to a specific person’s name.

“Awareness is the best defense against these targeted attacks. Never call a number listed on a tech support pop-up, and instead reach out to the company directly through their official website to validate the situation and next steps,” Darren Shou, head of technology at Norton LifeLock, added.


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Printable version | Nov 29, 2021 5:35:40 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/technology/internet/tech-support-scams-have-become-top-phishing-threats/article37188112.ece

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