Some of the top searches on web like ‘free download’, ‘free login’, ‘torrent’ and ‘pirated download’ are conjoined with modifying terms, usually of a television or film title, to enable cyber attacks. This latest trend is increasingly being used to target the end users who are trying to bypass the subscription of various OTT platforms. This is leading to malware attacks and cyber vulnerability attacks.
As the Covid-19 induced lockdown came into effect on March 24, there was massive hike in piracy websites traffic as people were increasingly turning to online platforms for entertainment. A digital piracy authority MUSO reported that just in last week of March piracy rose by 62% in India as compared to that in the last week of February. The most visited online piracy websites with highest traffic are Stremio, Popcorn Time, Solarmovie, 123Movies and Tamil Rockers.
McAfee has been conducting research on the threats that Indian customers are exposed while searching for online entertainment content.
“The lockdown induced surge in online entertainment traffic has brewed the perfect storm for cybercriminals. They are following and targeting consumers’ obsession with accessing content – particularly for free. They entice users to visit potentially malicious websites, designed to install malware or steal passwords and personal information” said McAfee India’s Vice President of Engineering and Managing Director Venkat Krishnapur. “In these uncertain times, it is crucial that consumers stay vigilant, invest in responsible online behaviour and recognize that if something is too good to be true, it probably isn’t true” he said.
McAfee has identified top ten web risks for television and movie titles. ‘Delhi Crime’ lies at the top of list of television titles posing at maximum risk for online risk. It is followed by ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’, ‘Panchayat’, ‘Akoori’ and ‘Fauda’. The movie list is headed by ‘Mardaani2’ at number one, followed by ‘Zootopia’, ‘Jawaani Jaaneman’ and ‘Chapaak’.
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