Star Struck? Make Sure It Doesn’t Lead You To Malicious Websites

The annual festive bash is approaching and the residents in my society are spending sleepless nights planning and practicing for the cultural show. We plan to make humour the theme this year which always helps to create a happy atmosphere.

“Humour? I have got an idea. Why not search the net for Kapil Sharma jokes? He is really witty and his one-liners pack a solid punch. We can get great ideas!” suggests my neighbor.

Google is pressed into service and ‘Kapil Sharma+ MP4’ is entered as the search term. We select a site that promises some of his best joke collection and click on it. But lo and behold! McAfee Web Advisor marks it red and we contemplate if we really want to go on the site!

We definitely don’t, so we cancel, but it brought to mind once again how cyber criminals are continuing to leverage the fascination of consumers with celebrity culture. They are banking on online searches made by fans and other unsuspecting users to steer them to potentially malicious websites that can be used to install malware, steal personal information and even passwords.

McAfee has released its 11th Global ‘Most Sensational Celebrities 2017’ list and like in the previous years, actors continue to be the most searched for celebs online in India. Whereas in the US, musicians like Avril Lavigne holds sway, in India it’s movie actors all the way. The sensational tag only indicates the popularity of the celebs as online search subjects which cyber criminals take advantage of. They leverage downloadable content like music or video files to entice consumers to visit potentially malicious websites designed to install malware.

So, who tops the list of the Most Sensational Celebrity in 2017? Any guesses? He laughed his way to the 3rd rank in 2015, failed to feature in the list in 2016 only to return as the top sensational celeb this year. He has you tickling with laughter as soon as he opens his mouth- you guessed right, it’s Kapil Sharma. He is followed by Salman Khan while Aamir Khan is close on his heels at 3rd place.

Here is the list of the top 10 in 2017:

  1. Kapil Sharma
  2. Salman Khan
  3. Aamir Khan
  4. Priyanka Chopra
  5. Anushka Sharma
  6. Sunny Leone
  7. Kangana Ranaut
  8. Ranveer Singh
  9. Shahid Kapoor
  10. Tiger Shroff

 

Compared to last three years when Alia Bhatt, Priyanka Chopra and Sonakshi Sinha had respectively topped the lists, the male actors seem to have generated more risky results this year. The young brigade that made its appearance in the list in 2015, Ranveer and Tiger have made it to the list this year as well.

The study by McAfee is conducted using McAfee WebAdvisor site ratings to determine the number of risky websites generated by searches on Google, Bing and Yahoo!, that included a celebrity name and search terms likely to yield potentially malicious websites in the results. For example, if you search for Salman Khan + MP3, the results returned may include some risky websites.

Fear thee not, Cybermum India will help you stay safe online, as always.

Follow these 3 tips to stay safe while satisfying your desire to get to know your idols better:

  • Be careful where you click: Hackers often offer links or popups that promise to contain just what you want. Do not be tempted by 3rd party links that may be ploys to steal your data. STOP. THINK. CLICK.
  • Browse with security: Use a tool such as McAfee WebAdvisor to keep you safe by identifying malicious websites before you click. Move away from sites marked in red and research well before accessing suspicious sites marked in yellow. It’s that simple- like traffic lights. Install it on the entire family’s laptops.
  • Free comes with a catch: There are no free lunches, the old adage goes, and it holds true for the online world too. You may end up downloading malware along with free MP4 or wallpapers. So, wait for the actual release of a video or song. better yet, purchase it from a legitimate source.

It goes without saying that your data security depends on your device security too. So always use a comprehensive security software on your devices to enjoy a hassle-free search for your favourite celebrity.

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s