Domain Squatting: Typos Open Consumers To Phishing Attack

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Typos used to be merely annoying, but now they can make you the target of a phishing attack.

 

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Scammers are reserving the URLs for misspelled versions of legitimate websites in order to trick people into giving up their logins and other personal and financial information. As reported by Slate:

Cybersecurity firm Endgame noticed recently that someone was attempting to distribute malware through the URL Netflix.om. The .om domain is the top-level country code for Oman, but hackers were using it to direct sloppy typists away from Netflix.com. This type of attack, known as typosquatting, isn’t new, but Endgame says it’s the first time the firm has seen the (admittedly pretty smart) .om variation.

In 2013, Robert Siciliano of the cybersecurity company McAfee warned that “[s]ometimes these sites exist to sell products and services that are in direct competition with those sold at the website you had intended to visit, but most often they are intended to steal your personal identifiable information, including credit cards or passwords.” There can be phishing attacks within the typosquatting that lead you to other malicious sites. For example, in some of the .om attacks, the page redirects a few times before landing on a fake “Flash Updater” site that tries to trick you into clicking.

 

Double-check the URL before entering your login credentials on any site where your personal or financial information could be at risk, such as banking sites, online shopping sites and credit card/financial services sites.

 

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