Beware of The Avengers 2 Phishing Scams
At the moment, The Avengers 2 is the hottest movie on the planet. In 2012, the first Avengers movie earned $1.51 billion dollars at the box office. This year’s sequel has once again become a global sensation, and lots of fans are flocking to see it. Unfortunately, at the same time, some cybercriminals are taking advantage of this opportunity to wreak havoc and steal personal data. The Baidu Antivirus Security Center has discovered that some cybercriminals are using the keywords "The Avengers 2" to lure people into traps and steal their personal information in phishing attacks. To add insult to injury, some of the attacks make use of malicious bundled programs that negatively impact the performance of people’s computers. In light of this situation, the Baidu Antivirus Security Center would like to remind all PC users (and Avengers enthusiasts) to be wary when clicking links related to The Avengers 2. This is particularly true for software downloads and for torrent websites.
One specific scam promises a blu-ray download of the movie, which is in itself illegal and could result in legal action being taken against users. The website in question promises not only a free download of the movie, but also a points card for $1,000 USD worth of gasoline. When users click the link, they’re treated to a survey that requests personal information.
Figure 1. Example of an Avengers 2 phishing website.
Figure 2. A phishing survey in which personal data is collected.
The above case is just one example of the many ways cybercriminals are taking advantage of the popularity of The Avengers 2 to trick users. They may even bundle software with download files to infect users' computers with malware. Once a user downloads the file, it may tamper with his or her browser homepage or search engine settings, or even install malicious browser plug-ins. This will not only affect the user's online experience, but could also result in the disclosure of personal information or cause financial losses. Cybercriminals will often take advantage of popular movies or TV shows to engage in phishing attacks, as evidenced in the past by the similar phishing attacks via the movie The Interview.
Figure 3. Example of a user’s homepage that has been maliciously tampered with.
The Baidu Antivirus Security Center would like to remind users that in order to avoid computer problems caused by malware, they should install multi-functional security software. If you believe your computer is already infected, you can use Baidu Antivirus 2015's Quick Scan feature for a security health check and to remove any suspicious programs.
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Sources: Box Office Mojo