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Around 56% Indians Fall Victim to Discount Scams During Online Holiday Shopping, Reveals McAfee

"As threat actors continue to enhance their techniques and explore new creative means of theft, it is crucial that users are mindful of potential risks and undertake necessary measures to protect themselves this holiday season," advised Krishnapur

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The survey revealed a staggering number (52.6 per cent) between the age of 18 to 24 years faced the brunt of romance scams, and 60 per cent millennials agree to being scammed by e-greetings. Pixabay

With Christmas around the corner, cybersecurity firm McAfee on Tuesday revealed that 56.1 per cent Indians have fallen victim to discount scams by clicking on malicious links during holiday shopping online.

The year-end festivities present a variety of threats to consumers shopping online, with more than half (53.6 per cent) Indians falling victim to scams resulting from deceiving apps, said McAfee’s ‘Christmas Scams Survey’.

At least one in four (28.6 per cent) Indians have lost between Rs 15,000-Rs 20,000 as a result of fake online retail sites, while 78.6 per cent experienced seasonal travel scams through unsolicited and malicious links.

While cybercriminal activity continues to grow in sophistication, popular scams like email phishing (25.3 per cent) and text phishing (21.1 per cent) still result in close to a quarter of Indians being duped throughout the season, said the survey.

“With the sheer volume of people shopping online, they tend to get careless, carried away with discounts, and open themselves to phishing attacks, frauds, malicious websites, and viruses that aim to steal money and personal information,” said Venkat Krishnapur, Vice-President of Engineering and Managing Director, McAfee India.

Throughout the festivities, 60.2 per cent people have fallen victim to robocalling and 57.1 per cent through SIM-jacking.

McAfee, Inc. is an American global computer security software company.
McAfee, Inc. is an American global computer security software company. Wikimedia Commons

A robocall is a phone call that uses a computerized autodialer to deliver a pre-recorded message, as if from a robot.

A new trend that hit unsavvy consumers hard this festive season was through phony gift cards.

Nearly 39.3 per cent Indians were directed to a site, were they were asked to input personal information such as name, telephone number or credit card information, with 40 per cent losing between Rs 10,000 to Rs 15,000.

Leveraging the emotional aspects of philanthropy and generosity, 60.7 per cent were victims of fake charities, with scammers impersonating genuine trusts to ask for donations.

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The survey revealed a staggering number (52.6 per cent) between the age of 18 to 24 years faced the brunt of romance scams, and 60 per cent millennials agree to being scammed by e-greetings.

“As threat actors continue to enhance their techniques and explore new creative means of theft, it is crucial that users are mindful of potential risks and undertake necessary measures to protect themselves this holiday season,” advised Krishnapur. (IANS)

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Indian People Get Most Affected By “Shlayer”, Most Widespread MacOS Threat

In order to achieve installations, the threat actor behind Shlayer sets up a malware distribution system with a number of channels leading users to download the malware

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Shlayer
The infection process often consists of two phases - first the user installs Shlayer, then the malware installs a selected type of adware. Device infection, however, starts with an unwitting user downloading the malicious programme. Pixabay

People from India are among those most affected by Shlayer, the most widespread macOS threat in 2019, after those in the US, says a new report from cybersecurity firm Kaspersky.

A smart malware distribution system, Shlayer spreads via a partner network, entertainment websites and even Wikipedia, demonstrating that even users that only visit legal sites still need additional protection online. Top countries where users have been affected by the threat include the US (31 per cent), India (18.9 per cent), Germany (14 per cent), France (10 per cent) and the UK (10 per cent), according to the report.

“The macOS platform is a good source of revenue for cybercriminals, who are constantly looking for new ways to deceive users, and actively use social engineering techniques to spread their malware. This case demonstrates that such threats can be found even on legitimate sites,” said Anton Ivanov, Kaspersky Security Analyst.

“Luckily for macOS users, the most widespread threats that target macOS currently revolve around feeding illicit advertising rather than something more dangerous, such as stealing financial data,” Ivanov said. The malware specialises in installation of adware – programmes that terrorise users by feeding illicit ads, intercepting and gathering users’ browser queries, and modifying search results to distribute even more advertising messages.

Shlayer’s share among all attacks on macOS devices registered by Kaspersky products in January – November 2019 amounted to almost a third, with nearly all other top 10 macOS threats being the adware that Shlayer installs: AdWare.OSX.Bnodlero, AdWare. OSX.Geonei, AdWare.OSX.Pirrit and AdWare.OSX.Cimpli.

Shlayer
People from India are among those most affected by Shlayer, the most widespread macOS threat in 2019, after those in the US, says a new report from cybersecurity firm Kaspersky. IANS

The infection process often consists of two phases – first the user installs Shlayer, then the malware installs a selected type of adware. Device infection, however, starts with an unwitting user downloading the malicious programme.

In order to achieve installations, the threat actor behind Shlayer sets up a malware distribution system with a number of channels leading users to download the malware. Kaspersky said in 2019 it prevented attacks carried out by Shlayer at least once on every 10th device using Kaspersky Solutions for Mac.

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“A good web security solution can protect users from threats such as these, making the experience of searching the web safe and pleasant,” said Ivanov. (IANS)