Social media remains one of the main targets of hackers

Social Media bleibt eines der Hauptziele von Hackern

Social Media

By Christine Schönig, Regional Director Security Engineering CER, Office of the CTO, at Check Point Software Technologies GmbH

Christine Schönig, Regional Director Security Engineering CER, Office of the CTO at Check Point

Social media platforms are growing continuously, as figures from the first half of 2021 show. The web pages now have 4.2 billion users worldwide. This means that an average of 490 million accounts, or 13 percent, are added every year. That’s a total of over 53 percent of the world’s population if only one user came to each account.

Who is surprised that these platforms and their accounts are very attractive for cybercriminals? People sometimes provide extremely intimate photos and information that can be easily used for blackmail, fraud and theft. For this reason, the three most common scams have been compiled in order to simply be better prepared:

Fake Web pages

One of the most common methods is to set up deceptively real-looking, but fake web pages. They even use very similar looking URLs. People are lured there via phishing emails or phishing SMS and a link contained therein and asked to enter data, which then goes to the hackers. As a subject, it is often warned that you should change your password because an incident has occurred.

DNS Hijacking

Here, the cybercriminals impersonate the sender of a trusted social network in an e-mail. This is how they want to get to the personal data of the victim. If successful, these are sold on the Dark Web, for example, and misused to send mass spam emails – or to blackmail.

Contaminated routers

Hackers like to infect the routers themselves with malware after they have penetrated a device connected to it. Once you have cracked the router, you can change its DNS address so that when the user tries to access a certain web page via his browser, he is directed to another page selected by the attacker.

Thus, it can be summarized that everyone should be very careful before clicking on links in e-mails or SMS – the more lurid this is written, the more. The sender’s address should be checked, the content should be questioned for plausibility and the address of the targeted web page should be scrutinized. Spelling mistakes or missing signatures are also conspicuous signs of fraud. In addition, no reputable company will ever ask for access data for any Internet account via e-mail or SMS.
All this should be taken into account in order to get through the holidays safely and relaxed, which traditionally see an increase in cyber attacks with the beginning of the shopping season.

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