The last season of Game of Thrones (GoT) is finally on air, and everyone seems to be excited about it! GoT is one of the most successful shows ever to be shown on TV. However, the massive popularity of the show has lead to cybercriminals exploiting people’s love for it by tricking individuals into various online scams, and many people have lost their hard earned money by fraudulent emails in circulation nowadays.
If you are a hard-core GoT enthusiast, it’s essential that you know how these attacks are executed and you don’t fall into these seemingly innocent but dangerous traps. The right knowledge can help you avoid disastrous results so let’s get started on what these online scams are? What is the modus operandi of these cyber-criminals? And how you can avoid falling for their tricks?
How Are GoT Fans Being Targeted By Cyber-Criminals?
Every ardent fan of GoT loves to learn a great deal about their favourite characters and the show. They even look for their merchandise, forums to discuss their favourite characters with other enthusiasts and search for basically anything and everything related to this all-time favourite show. This is where the gates of malicious activity open up for the evil perpetrators!
They have started to target unsuspecting fans by creating fake websites posing as legitimate ones where users are invited to take part in several engaging activities. Activities range from organizing “free competitions” which claim to give away merchandise to winners if they provide personal details such as their email addresses, mobile numbers etc. Such information is sensitive and can be used for planning and executing further attacks. Some even claim that they give away merchandise for free in return for entering credit card details! Many of us won’t fall for this trick, but there are still some unaware or sometimes ignorant individuals who do.
How Do You Know Which GoT Website Is Legitimate And Which Is Not?
Such scams shouldn’t rob you of the chance to participate in specific fan base actions and enjoy with your fellow GoT lovers. So how do you know if the site you are visiting is a legitimate one?
Well firstly, being aware and using simple common-sense will help a great deal. If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Fraudulent websites mostly include sites which request for personal or financial information. If they are asking you for something they shouldn’t, your spidery senses should become alert. They might use your personal data for various marketing purposes and send you junk you don’t need.
There are also fake streaming sites which will show up when you try to watch Game of Thrones for free. These make the user download browser extensions and apps which then provide personal information along with credit card details to the cyber-criminals. Nothing is displayed at your end, but you lose your sensitive information to cyber-fraudulent.
Now that we’ve seen how scammers can prey on people, it becomes imperative to be aware of these phishing scams and make others aware as well. People should stay away and stay safe from such malicious online scams. All it takes is a single click on a random link in an email or a message to lose your valuable information to the hands of hackers which may result in further financial losses.
How One Can Safeguard Oneself?
- Avoid clicking random links which may have come through email, messages or any other medium.
- The first thing to check after you open a website is whether its URL starts with ‘HTTPS’ rather than ‘HTTP’. Any information related to you should not be entered on websites starting with ‘HTTP’.
- ‘HTTPS’ provides you with extra SSL security which prevents your sensitive data, e.g. passwords, credit card details and the like from being spied on by others.
- Keep spam filters enabled in all your devices; these spam filters check on fraudulent websites even before their links can reach up to you.
- Don’t fall for any “lucrative” ads or websites which offering irresistible (and fake) offers, deals or information about your favourite show.
These suggestions and precautions may seem simple but simple things are what helps the most. These guidelines are sure to keep you safe from the majority of phishing scams out there. Stay safe from phishing, spoilers and keep watching GoT, let’s hope your favourite team wins.