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Marketing / Fake offer social media scams on the rise in January, figures show

Fake offer social media scams on the rise in January, figures show

The number of fake offers looking to scam users out of their cash on social media rose in January, according to figures from security firm Symantec.

tablet payment

The company’s latest threat intelligence shows that fake offers accounted for about 39 per cent of social media threats last month, compared to 27 per cent in December 2015.

These scams typically take the form of a post – often paid or promoted – with an illegitimate offer aimed at taking users’ cash for nothing or harvesting their payment information.

Manually shared scams remained the top threat, although their share of social media threats overall fell from nearly 65 per cent in December to 56 per cent in January.

In third place was “like jacking”, which rose to just over three per cent last month.

Elsewhere, retail was the most targeted industry in January. One in every 57 emails in the sector contained malware, Symantec’s figures showed. It was followed by the services and agriculture, forestry and fishing industries.

“One silver lining is that targeted attacks were down slightly for Retail Trade, from 3.6 per cent in December to 2.2 per cent for January,” Ben Nahorney wrote on the firm’s blog.

Another positive sign was a drop in spear phishing, which fell to 16.7 attacks per day in January after reaching a 12-month high in November. However, the finance, insurance and real estate sector saw a 40.2 per cent rise in these attacks.

For more on the latest cyber security threats, see the Symantec blog.


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