ESET: Top 5 Valentine's Day Scams Doing The Rounds |

ESET: Top 5 Valentine's Day Scams Doing The Rounds

Security firm issues a list of ways your heart can get the better of your brain.


Valentine's Day is on the horizon, with a deluge of offers from major brands and commercial establishments. However, Archies and Co aren't the only ones chuffed about it. According to the good people at ESET, your friendly neighbourhood ski mask-wearing cybercriminals have been busy setting up V-Day booby traps. Reserachers from the anti-virus maker have identified five security threats targeting romeos prone to love-addled lapses of judgement.

Malware Masquerading As Freebies on Social Networking Websites
Social Networking hubs such as Twitter and Facebook are awash with messages touting V-Day freebies, crazy discount coupons, and offers. That's are little more that nifty social engineering desined to divert gullible users to malicious links. Most of these messages employ shortened hyperlinks that make it difficult to ascertain where they actually lead to.

The Russian Mail-Order Bride Trap
Couples aren't the only ones in the cybercriminals' crosshairs. Desperate singles eager to buy love are falling prey to sneaky emails and forum posts promising perfect Russian wives for a price. According to ESET researchers, residents of USA, Europe, and Asia are being targeted with such offers bearing malicious links. The links have been found to originate, not surprisingly, from Russia.

Blackhat SEO
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) when performed by internet baddies to bring malicious links to the top results is termed as blackhat SEO. Since everybody and their uncle will be searching all things Valentine, they are most likely to click on the first few malicious results thanks to the SEO optimisation. Be careful around such results.

Fake Greeting Cards
Only accept V-Day greeting cards from people that you know. It's best not to follow the hyperlinks, if you receive an unexpected e-card from a unlikely source. More often than not, it leads to trouble.

Identity Theft
The risk isn't just restricted to computer infection. Beware of V-Day apps that dupe users into revealing and sharing sensitive information. This momentary lapse of judgment allows these malicious apps with more permissions than they had bargained for. Don't forget to check the App background thoroughly before accepting.

TAGS: Security, Internet, Facebook, Twitter, Nachiket