Email spam scam uses fake US gymnastics scandal: Hackers and scammers cash in on London Olympics

Scammers are cashing in on the 2012 London Olympic Games, with security analysts revealing that 80% of Olympic domain names are being used to host scams, with one website using a false Olympic drugs scandal to trick users into downloading a computer virus.

According to security research firm Sophos, one scam email falsely claims that a US gold medallist has tested positive to a banned substance during the Games, with a full video news report available by clicking on a link to a YouTube video.

Clicking on the link takes you to a hacker attack site, designed to look like YouTube, where a malicious computer virus is automatically downloaded onto your computer.

Meanwhile, online security researchers at Zscaler have found three popular types of scams used by hackers and scammers during the Olympics, including websites claiming to allow viewers to illegally view live Olympic feeds from legitimate pay TV services such as Foxtel online, “typo squatting” sites that use a domain name similar to an official Olympic site, and “Made for Adsense” scams that use Google-lookalike pages to encourage users to click on advertisements.

SMEs and computer users should be wary of websites and links from unknown sources, maintain clear online security policies for staff, install security updates for software and use anti-virus software in order to negate some of the risks associated with online scams.

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