WhatsApp: Brazil leads in app scams in 2022 – 03/16/2023 – Tech
The Brazilian was the most targeted target in the world in blows with fake links on WhatsApp in 2022, according to a report by Kaspersky consultancy. The cybersecurity company identified 76,000 attempts at this fraud in the country last year alone.
Scammers use popular themes as bait to induce people to share personal data – the scam is called phishing, in reference to fishing. This information is used in other financial frauds: online purchases, creation of orange accounts, among other crimes.
Delivery service customers suffered the most attacks: 27.38% of attempts accounted for by Kaspersky. Fraudsters impersonate well-known logistics companies and send emails about problems with a delivery.
“If the victim falls for the scam and provides this information, in addition to access to the account and the possible loss of the money stored there, he may lose his identity and banking credentials, which can be sold on the Dark Web”, says the cybersecurity company.
Other popular targets for phishing attacks include online stores (15.56%), payment systems (10.39%) and banks (10.39%).
The growth in the number of transactions and digital interactions since the Covid pandemic increases the risk of this scam, according to the director of Kaspersky’s research team for Latin America, Fabio Assolini. “Many messaging services are preferably accessed on mobile devices. This increases the exposure of Brazilians to attacks”.
According to Assolini, few Brazilians have security applications installed on their cell phones, which also makes people in the country more susceptible to attacks.
Mobile browsers have even less built-in protections against phishing attacks. There are visual limitations to seeing the full URL. “If the victim accesses the link from a desktop, the fraudulent page will display a warning saying that it is only available from the smartphone”, exemplifies the Kaspersky expert.
Phishing attacks are common in email inboxes. Services themselves, such as Gmail, identify messages at risk of fraud.
The data was compiled by Kaspersky from blockades carried out on customer devices that use solutions from the cybersecurity company and had the cloud protection service activated (KSN). There are more than 400 million users and 240,000 corporate or government customers. The data collected is anonymous.
WhatsApp concentrates 82.71% of the false links blocked by Kaspersky. Telegram is behind (14.12%), followed by Viber (3.17%). WhatsApp is installed on 99% of Brazilian smartphones, against 60% in the case of Telegram, according to a survey by the Mobile Time website.
Completing the list of countries that suffer most from scams on WhatsApp: Russia (76 thousand), India (21 thousand), Italy (11 thousand), Germany (11 thousand), Germany (11 thousand), Mexico (11 thousand), Africa do Sul (10 thousand).
On Telegram, Brazil ranks second with 3,800 Phishing attempts. Russia leads (21 thousand).
SEE HOW TO AVOID THE SCAM
The biggest protection tip is to be suspicious, according to Kaspersky director Fábio Assolini. For privacy and safe browsing, check the authenticity of messages and calls, whether via WhatsApp, email or social networks, that promise big deals or that are urgent.
“Sometimes the emails and websites look real, but an indication of fraud is spelling errors or different addresses from the official channels”, says Assolini.
If you receive a link on WhatsApp or see a promotion in a sponsored post on social media, prefer to manually type the official URL into your browser. Thus, it is possible to find errors in the URL that are difficult to identify at first glance, such as “1” instead of “I” or “0” instead of “O”.
When the sender is legitimate, but the message content seems strange, check the message content on another company communication channel.
Kaspersky still suggests using a proven security solution while browsing the web. “Thanks to access to international threat intelligence sources, these solutions are able to identify and block spam and phishing campaigns.”