Posts Tagged ‘scam’
Online takeaway service JUST-EAT have today issued an email letting their subscribers know that there is currently a scam email circulating purporting to be offering £10 takeaway credit when the recipient completes a quick survey.
To be fair, the emails do look pretty genuine until you get to the part asking you to confirm your personal credentials.
JUST-EAT have said:
Dear JUST EAT Customer,
The online security of our customers is really important to JUST EAT.
We will never ask you to enter your JUST EAT account details or any personal information via email. And we don’t store payment information or card details anywhere in our systems.
Some customers are receiving particularly sophisticated scam emails. These emails look like they come from JUST EAT and ask you to enter personal and JUST EAT account details.
Unfortunately, email scams are all too common on the internet. We encourage you to remain vigilant online, frequently change your passwords and make sure your passwords are robust.
If you have any questions you can contact JUST-EAT at email@example.com.
There’s a new scam knocking about, which sees people being asked for money from one of their bosses. Now, most people don’t like their bosses and would think unprintable things if they asked them for money… but we’re still going to give you all a warning about it.
Basically, there’s emails doing the rounds which are fake, coming from your gaffer’s email address, telling them to transfer cash.
The Financial Fraud Action UK (FFA UK) said this particular scam has spiked in the past couple of weeks, and a number of small/medium-sized businesses in the UK have lost between £10,000 and £20,000 as a result.
What happens is, staff will get an email from what appears to be senior management, where they ask for money for a pressing matter, like the need to secure a contract. Any money transferred goes straight in the pocket of the fraudsters.
“While an urgent request from the boss might naturally prompt a swift response, it should in fact be a warning sign of a potential scam,” said Katy Worobec, director of FFA UK.
There’s a host of advice being doled about about this scam, but Bitterwallet has the only advice you really need – don’t lend your boss any money if they ask for it in an email. If they do, ring them up and ask them about it (or tell them to piss off).
The biggest online pharmacy in the UK has been slapped with a £130,000 fine after they sold patients’ personal data to scammers. Those scam artists then targeted people who are vulnerable and sick, which is just great.
Pharmacy2U (P2U) was hauled in by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) after it was discovered that they’d been giving names and contact details for people who had bought prescriptions and remedies from their site, through their Alchemy Direct Media company. It turns out they’d illegally sold the personal data of more than 21,000 NHS patients and P2U customers.
You’re supposed to get people’s permission before you sell their personal data – they did not.
It might be an idea to run a quality control over who you’re selling it to, which this lot clearly didn’t do, as one of the companies that bought the data were lottery fraudsters, who then went after pensioners with chronic health conditions.
Over 100,000 customer details were advertised for sale on the database, which actually broke people down into categories, such as detailing which people had Parkinson’s disease, or which ones were over 70.
ICO deputy commissioner David Smith said: “Patient confidentiality is drummed into pharmacists. It is inconceivable that a business in this sector could believe these actions were acceptable. Put simply, a reputable company has made a serious error of judgement, and today faces the consequences of that. It should send out a clear message to other companies that the customer data they hold is not theirs to do with as they wish.”
“Once people’s personal information has been sold on once in this way, we often see it then gets sold on again and again. People are left wondering why so many companies are contacting them and how they come to be in receipt of their details.”
“Patient confidentiality is drummed into pharmacists. It is inconceivable that a business in this sector could believe these actions were acceptable”
Daniel Lee, managing director of P2U, said: “This is a regrettable incident for which we sincerely apologise. While we are grateful that the ICO recognises that our breach was not deliberate, we appreciate this was a serious matter. As soon as the issue was brought to our attention, we stopped the trial selling of customer data and made sure that the information that had been passed on was securely destroyed. We have also confirmed that we will no longer sell customer data.”
“We take our responsibilities to the public very seriously and want to reassure our customers that no medical information, email addresses or telephone numbers were sold. Only names and postal addresses were given, for one-time use.”
The PPI scandal hasn’t even been sorted out, and we’re already looking at the next one to contend with. If you’re planning on making a PPI claim, do hurry up though – and here’s advice on how to do it.
Anyway, it looks like the next massive financial mis-selling scandal is going to concern pensions.
“These reforms have been in operation for six months now: long enough for the scammers to get going, working on defrauding people out of their life savings,” said Frank Field, chair of the Commons’ Work and Pensions Committee.
Some pensioners are already being hit with massive fees when they start using the freedoms they’ve now got with their pension, and there’s a lot to consider regarding the new rules on pensions. With all this to think about, Field said that the government need to start giving data – and fast – on how the reforms are working out for people, and fix any problems that have already arisen.
One of the big gripes is that, while the pensions now give people the right to take their savings as cash, advice needs to be given to any person who has not considered the long-term implications for later years, and make them aware of tax charges and the like.
“Good quality, co-ordinated and accessible guidance and advice will be the best tools to ensure people make the best, informed decisions about their retirement savings, and protect them from scammers,” said Field, adding: “We have seen all too clearly, too many times, what happens when financial information is not properly provided and regulated. We literally cannot afford another financial mis-selling scandal.”
Now, the government are doing something about this, and have set up the Pensions Wise service, which gives you a session over the phone, offering guidance and information about your pension and what you can do with the new rules. Sadly, it seems like there’s not many people using the service (so hop to it if you’re reading this – go and make the most of it) and pension companies should be doing more to point people toward it.
If being single isn’t tough enough, all the baddies on the internet are going after their dating profiles. AshleyMadison was the big profile hack, complete with leaks, and now, Match.com has been compromised as well.
A security alert was issued by an outfit called Malwarebytes, and they noted that the dating site was hacked and has spilled data all over the place. A hackers version of a money shot, if you like.
Malwarebytes said the site has fallen victim to malvertising, which looks to swindle the lonely out of their hard earned money. It is thought that there’s 5.5 million users at risk from this attack, which happens to be based on the Bedep trojan for those of you who know about this sort of thing. In plain English, it means that ne’er-do-wells can get at a load of private info and start trying to cadge money from you.
“The cost per thousand impressions for the booby trapped ad was only 36c, which is nothing compared to how much infected computers can bring in terms of revenues. For instance, CryptoWall demands $500 per victim,” said Jerome Segura, senior security researcher at Malwarebytes.
“We alerted Match.com and the related advertisers, but the malvertising campaign is still ongoing via other routes.”
A spokesperson for Match.com told The Inquirer: “We take the security of our members very seriously indeed. We are currently investigating this alleged issue.”
Even though Apple’s iOS is well regarded for its robust security, it isn’t completely without the risk of some swine causing bother with it. If you jailbreak a phone, you do away with all that lovely security so you can get full control of your gadget.
With that, malware is being installed via third-party iOS apps onto jailbroken iPhones, which has resulted in what is being described as “the largest known Apple account theft caused by malware.”
The malware is called KeyRaider, and has stolen around 225,000 iOS users’ Apple account credentials, purchasing receipts, certificates and private keys according to the security firm, Palo Alto Networks and Chinese iPhone developers Weiptech.
And now, for a lot of jargon.
“The malware hooks system processes through MobileSubstrate, and steals Apple account usernames, passwords and device GUID by intercepting iTunes traffic on the device. KeyRaider steals Apple push notification service certificates and private keys, steals and shares App Store purchasing information, and disables local and remote unlocking functionalities on iPhones and iPads,” the Palo Alto Networks wrote in a blog post.
So what’s happening, in plain English? Around 225,000 accounts are thought to be affected, and some people have said that their accounts are showing abnormal purchasing history. Others have said that their phones are being held for ransom by people who are best described as ‘not-rights’.
If you don’t have a jailbroken iPhone, iPad or iPod, then you don’t need to do anything at all. You’re golden. Those with affected jailbroken phones reside in countries including the UK, France, Germany, Australia, Russia, Japan, America, Canada, Israel, Italy, Spain, Singapore, and South Korea.
You can read all of Palo Alto Networks findings and check out their tool which will help you to check if your device has been affected and some other helpful bits… click here.
Volkswagen won a high court case to keep the paper from being unpublished, written by the University of Birmingham’s Flavio Garcia, and two colleagues from a university in the Netherlands.
The team found that car manufacturers including Audi, Volvo, Citroën, Honda and Fiat, as well as the aforementioned Volkswagen, had cars that were exposed to ‘keyless theft’ thanks to a device that was supposed to stop cars from being nicked, could be easily disabled.
And now, after a series of negotiations, Volkswagen have agreed to the report being published after getting one sentence removed from the original paper.
Garcia, and Roel Verdult and Bariş Ege from Radboud University in Nijmegen, said that they discovered flaws in the Swiss-made immobiliser system called Megamos Crypto, which is a device that stops the engine from starting when the corresponding transponder (which is embedded in the key) is not present.
However, it was found that it was possible to listen to signals sent between the key and the security system, which means that cars could be attacked by “close-range wireless communication.”
“Our attacks require close range wireless communication with both the immobiliser unit and the transponder,” say the team. “It is not hard to imagine real-life situations like valet parking or car rental where an adversary has access to both for a period of time. It is also possible to foresee a set-up with two perpetrators, one interacting with the car and one wirelessly pickpocketing the car key from the victim’s pocket.”
An injunction stopped the report from seeing the light of day, with Volkswagen arguing that the report would basically give criminals an idea or two. However, the research team brushed that complaint aside, saying that they were “responsible, legitimate academics doing responsible, legitimate academic work”.
This of course, follows the recall of 1.4m Fiat Chrysler vehicles, after some hackers got control of a Jeep.
You need to install updates on your browser at once, because there’s an exploit in it that wants to steal your data and has been turning up on websites and causing havoc.
Right away, go to Help, then hit ‘About Firefox’, then press the ‘Check for Updates’ button, to ensure you’ve got the latest version of the browser.
In a blog, Mozilla say the exploit makes use of a weakness in Firefox’s PDF viewer. The bug basically gets into your Windows computer and searches through your files looking for passwords from a host of popular FTP apps, as well as any text files with ‘pass’ or ‘access’ in the name. It will then, you suspect, send all that information to people who you really don’t want to be having that sort of information.
Even if you’re on a Mac and using Firefox, it’d be a good idea to do an update, as there’s no good reason why the baddies aren’t going after you too. So hurry up. Update your Firefox. Do it now!
How the Android fanboys laughed at the Apple fanboys, when there was a text message that could crash iPhones.
Well, the Apple crew can get their own back now, as there’s news of a text that can really stuff things up for Android devices. The rest of us, meanwhile, can wonder why people argue about which phone you should have. Seriously. Go for a walk or something.
Anyway, what’s this flaw? Well, seeing as most Android phones automatically download photos, and there’s a scam going around that enables hackers to take control of your phone via photo messages, and there’s 950 million Android users worldwide, we’ve got a problem.
The picture in question allows nasty sorts to get complete control of Android devices, accessing your camera and everything else. Thanks to Android phones automatically downloading photos in texts, you wouldn’t even need to open it to be vulnerable to the malware.
So what are Google doing about it?
They said: “This vulnerability was identified in a laboratory setting on older Android devices, and as far as we know, no one has been affected. As soon as we were made aware of the vulnerability we took immediate action and sent a fix to our partners to protect users.”
“As part of a regularly scheduled security update, we plan to push further safeguards to Nexus devices starting next week. And, we’ll be releasing it in open source when the details are made public by the researcher at BlackHat.”
There you go then.
We told you about the trouble surrounding Adobe Flash and how the hackers might come after you. Well, the software is now automatically blocked by all versions of the Firefox browser. Remember Firefox? Awww.
Anyway, Mozilla – the people behind Firefox – have brought in the block, which saw cyber-scallies able to do all manner of dodgy things, including stealing documents from a security firm. Mozilla said that this block will stay until ”Adobe releases an updated version to address known critical security issues”.
Adobe have said that they’re taking all this very, very seriously and that they’re working on fixing the bugs and flaws.
Mozilla have given out advice on how to adjust Firefox’s settings so Flash will only run with your permission. You can see that here. Or, you can click here to make sure you have the latest version of Flash, but it is advised that you stop using it at all, for the time being.
You should only activate Flash on sites that you trust.
Facebook’s security chief Alex Stamos, wants Flash killed off completely, saying: “It is time for Adobe to announce the end-of-life date for Flash and to ask the browsers to set killbits on the same day.”
Adobe have said that the patches to fix all the Flash troubles should be made available to everyone at some point this week, so until then, stay vigilant or continue with your cavalier attitude. Whatever. We’re not your real dad.
According to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), there’s been a rise in spam calls and texts, with more than 180,000 complaints made about these nuisances in the last year alone. That’s a 12% rise, compared with the year before.
The watchdog also said that they’d issued five fines relating to all this, totalling £386,000, alongside eight enforcement notices, with another 31 firms being “monitored”.
The said: “Most concerns related to accident claims, green energy deals, payday loans and lifestyle surveys. Live calls generate significantly more concerns than automated calls and spam texts.”
One of the reasons there’s been a spike, is that this year, the law was changed, to make it easier for companies to be fined for breaching rules regarding nuisance calls and texts. The ICO have also been doing a load of investigations where allegations of personal data being obtained or disclosed illegally. In one case, a Transport for London employee was prosecuted for illegally accessing Oyster card records.
Launching the report, the information commissioner, Christopher Graham, said: “We’ve seen real developments in the laws we regulate during that time, particularly over the past year. Just look at the EU court of justice ruling on Google search results, a case that could never have been envisaged when the data protection law was established.”
The executive director of Which!!!, Richard Lloyd, said that this was jst “tip of the iceberg”, adding: “This is why regulators, government and industry must work harder to cut off unwanted calls and texts that annoy millions of us every day. The ICO must use its new powers to full effect and hit hard any company breaking cold-calling rules. We also want to see senior executives personally held to account if their company makes unlawful calls.”
As well as being exploited by a Chinese hacker crew, it has now been added to the Magnitude exploit kit, which enables amateur malware authors to build all manner of software which could make your life difficult. There’s already been some attempts to install ransomware on some computers.
Adobe have confirmed that the flaw is being jumped on by hackers, especially those using Internet Explorer on Windows 7 and Firefox on Windows XP. Even if you aren’t using these things, you should still sort your life out and update your Flash.
If you prefer, you can just get rid of Flash. As most computers come with it built-in, even though it isn’t the crucial thing it once was, this means hackers are always tempted to attack it.
If you’re using Chrome, your browser updates it automatically. If not, click here to see if you have the latest version of Flash and, if you don’t, update it now.
Careful on your phone, now! Why? Criminals are sending people text messages that look like they’re from your bank – but they’re not! And of course, they’re after you juicy bank details so they can steal your pennies.
So what’s the skinny? Well, the texts claim that there has been fraudulent activity in your account or, in a more sly move, that your account details need to be updated. A phone number and website are provided, saying that the matter is very urgent.
Of course, the number and website is controlled by scammers, and Financial Fraud Action UK, have warned that this type of hoodwinkery is on the rise, with a spike in the last couple of weeks.
To make the texts seem authentic, fraudsters use specialist software which alters the sender ID on a message so that it appears with the name of a bank as the sender. This can mean that the text becomes included within an existing text message thread on the recipient’s phone.
Katy Worobec, director of Financial Fraud Action UK, said: “These text messages can look very authentic, so it’s important to be alert. Always be wary if you receive a message out of the blue asking you for any personal or financial details. If you’re ever at all suspicious, call your bank on a number that you know. Remember, fraudsters are after your security details – don’t reveal anything unless you are absolutely sure who you are dealing with.”
Of course, what normally happens when there’s fraud, is that your bank will ring you up and tell you what’s going on. There, you’ll go through security and other means to put your mind at ease. If your bank texts you, ever, it is usually to sell you something, so be aware. However, some fraudsters will send a text to say you’ll be receiving a call from your bank’s fraud department, which makes the whole thing more complicated.
Things to look out for
If you get a text, asking you for your personal details and sensitive information, chances are, it is a scam. A bank will never ask for your full password.
If you’re asked to call the number given in the text message, it’d be worth entering the number online, as it is likely to come up as a scam number. If you’re unsure, get a number you trust, like one included on your statement or one from your bank’s official website.
Your bank will never ask you to update your personal details via a link in a text, or tell you how to respond to a text message to confirm a transaction. They will also never ask you to transfer money into another account, ever. So if you get a whiff of anything that sounds dodgy, don’t do it.
The watchdog sent an illegal Vauxhall Astra with broken and missing light bulbs, irregular tyre pressures, oil leaks and faulty windscreen wipers to the centre in Filton, Bristol. The car was supposed to get a major service, which should’ve cost £235.
Investigators soon found that something was amiss, and told North Avon Magistrates’ Court: “It became obvious that not all the checks were done. Things were ticked as having been done that had not been and the consumer was not made aware (of the defects).”
“This is a national company. A consumer puts a lot of trust and faith in a national firm to do a proper job to ensure a car service is conducted thoroughly and professionally and in these circumstances it was not.”
This won’t allay some of the fears that many drivers have, that they’re being ripped off when it comes to getting their cars fixed or given the once over. This uncover sting came about after the number of complaints about the car industry in the area, were rather high.
Halfords pleaded guilty to eight counts of breaching consumer protection laws and the mechanic who carried out the service, has since resigned. Magistrates fined the company £32,000, ordered them to pay £14,862.04 costs and a £120 victim surcharge.
According to research, there’s around 2.8 million of you out there who have downloaded Minecraft applications on their Android smartphones and tablets, which are malicious.
There’s been a host of dodgy apps doing the rounds in the last year, and 33 of them have been spotted in the Google Play store. These apps tend to offer cheats and tips to players, but of course, they’re doing something else that is no good for you at all. Once you download these apps, you end up getting a warning which says your device has been infected with a “dangerous virus”.
These are some of the malicious apps.
If the apps fool you, you’re then asked to sign-up with a premium-rate SMS subscription which tells you that it’ll rid your gadgets of nasties.
It won’t, of course. What it will do is charge you for texts, coming in at £3.40 per week, which is around £177 per year if you don’t sort it out. The bogus virus warning page looks like this.
One of the things that gives away these apps are the myriad of negative reviews and comments they’ve received. If you’re ever downloading any app, it is always worth looking at the score they’ve been given and checking out the reviews on Google Play, right before you hit the download button.
A number of the apps have been removed from Google Play, but that’s not to say they got them all. Obviously, snide developers are probably making more and tying them in the with hugely popular Minecraft game.
Like we said, to stop this happening, always look at the ratings and reviews on any app and get some security software for your Android phone. You can see some of the best anti-virus Android software here.