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A week in security (May 28 – June 3)

Last week on Labs, we talked about the significance of SEO poisoning in the world of search marketing, blackmail attempts against financial institutions in Canada, voice command flaws in smart assistants, survey and potential phishing scams on Instagram, and the latest changes in Office 365. We also shared our latest intel about America Geeks, a band of tech scammers that we profiled in 2015 and … [Read more...]

Instagram story spam claims free Apple Watch

I have to admit, I’m not 100 percent sure who Elton Castee is. “Who’s that?” you ask? Digging around revealed that he’s big on YouTube, has done some films, and raises money for dogs, which is very cool. He’s also popular on Instagram, with 400k+ followers. With that in mind, we’ve seen a few reports of his account being compromised (and by … [Read more...]

Fake Malwarebytes helpline scammer caught in the act

An estimated one in every 10 American adults lost money in a cyber scam in the past 12 months, according to a report released by the FTC earlier in the month. On average, each scam victim lost $430, totaling about $9.5 billion overall. To put this in perspective, that’s over 22 million Americans scammed for $26 million a day, more than $1 million an hour, $18,000 per second. No one is immune, and … [Read more...]

Netflix phish claims your membership is on hold

The days of ugly-looking phish pages hosted on something akin to a Geocities page are slowly receding into the distance. For quite some time now, phish attacks have made attempts to look fairly sophisticated and stand a decent chance of fooling anyone not keeping their guard up. Today, we have a good example of this with a Netflix phish currently in circulation and (potentially) dropping into a … [Read more...]

Far Cry 5 download offers: embrace the power of “no”

The recently released Far Cry 5 is a video game where you reclaim Montana from a cult obsessed with the “power of yes” by hitting members over the head with a shovel. It’s also one of the biggest sellers for publisher Ubisoft to date, and it stands to reason that many people would like to grab a copy for free. It’s been a while since we saw a wave of YouTube vids promising … [Read more...]

“Celebrating Stephen Hawking” with a 419 scam

The recently departed Stephen Hawking is apparently back from the dead, now a target for scammers wanting to extract some quick cash from the unwary in the form of a vaguely surreal 419 scam. The whole thing begins with an email from, er, Stephen Hawking titled “Celebrating Stephen Hawking.” Click to enlarge The body text is a slightly mangled swipe job from this AP article over on … [Read more...]

Panic attack: Apple scams apply pressure

We’ve seen a number of Apple-related phishes in circulation over the last few days. While most of them already lead to deactivated phishing sites, we thought it was worth highlighting some of the tricks being used to bait people into handing over payment details at the moment. Fake receipt emails First up, a number of fake “receipt” emails ranging in date from February 2–6. While … [Read more...]

“Who visits your Twitter profile” spam app brings week of chaos

Twitter spam has been around forever, and rogue apps asking for installs in return for a cool feature (to be more accurate, spamming your contacts) is a constant thorn in our Twittery sides. Over the weekend, we observed a new Twitter app doing the rounds and causing a lot of congestion on people’s timelines. What is it? We first noticed this when a number of my contacts using the #FBPE … [Read more...]

Of princes and perpetrators: Beware of getting ensnared in 419 scams

We’ve mentioned before that 419 scams don’t always originate from Nigeria. It’s a very simple and popular scam that can be attempted by pretty much anyone with a flair for social engineering. Indeed, 419 scams are so associated with the region that many scammers in non-Nigerian countries know they have an additional layer of “It wasn’t me” potentially … [Read more...]

Tech support scammer tries to sell free software

AmericaGeeks is your typical tech support scam company, but with an extra warming glow of attitude, greed, and complete all-around rudeness. Most scams will gladly take your money by buttering up the victim while simultaneously scaring them into thinking that they are in a dangerous situation with their computer or device. They then swoop in to heroically “help” them. AmericaGeeks … [Read more...]