Beware the holiday season spammer scammer…
“Holiday spam” can account for up to six percent of all spam received. At the season’s peak approximately 108,000 messages a day are holiday-themed - airline confirmation emails or receipts make up nearly 60 percent of all summer holiday spam messages which usually deliver malware/viruses in an attachment or link to dangerous webpages.
“As the travel industry starts promoting summer deals earlier; scammers, too, have plunged into the trend with spammed malware campaigns using holiday hooks,” explained Catalin Cosoi, Chief Chief Security Strategist at Bitdefender, creators of internationally certified internet security software. “Flight confirmation emails are the top lure this season, followed by hotel deals, extravagant cruise packages and vacation loans.
"Scammers targeting vacation-goers may have various aims: to gather contacts to build a victim network for future malicious and spam campaigns, to collect card details, personal details for impersonations, etc,” continued Catalin Cosoi. “It all depends on the attacker’s agenda.”
Top tips to staying safe online while planning and enjoying the perfect holiday:
• Research the website you’re using before booking flights or a hotel
• Look what other people have to say about a certain ticketing/booking website
• Contact a representative of the company to gain details about the seat or the vacation venue
• Do not click links embedded in emails that pop up in your inbox if you haven’t specifically asked for travel offers or flight reservations. Never open files attached to such emails
• When you leave for the vacation of your dreams, don’t announce it on social networks. An empty house can be extremely tempting for burglars
• Avoid shopping online or checking e-banking and credit accounts when using public Wi-Fi hotspots such as those in airports, coffee shops or shopping centres – nor via the hotspot in your hotel.