- The FBI is warning that cybercriminals are using search engine advertisement services to impersonate brands and direct users to malicious sites to steal sensitive information.
- Hackers can use a wide array of techniques to get to your data, specifically on exchange platforms for cryptocurrencies.
- The FBI gives recommendations to protect against these attacks and includes ad-blockers in its suggestion.
The FBI recently issued a public service message warning about fake advertising which can be displayed at the top of search results, appearing to be the results themselves. These ads have been spotted impersonating well-known businesses.
Recommendations from the FBI
The FBI also adds that these adverts have been used to spoof financial websites, especially exchange platforms for cryptocurrencies. These malicious websites pose as legitimate platforms and request users to provide their login info and payment information.
Some websites may be quite convincing as the download is named after the program the user planned to download, and the download page appears to be real.
Here are some of the recommendations from The FBI to protect yourself against these malicious attacks, both as an individual and as a business:
- Before clicking on an advertisement, check the URL to make sure the site is authentic. A malicious domain name may be similar to the intended URL but with typos or a misplaced letter.
- Rather than search for a business or financial institution, type the business’s URL into an internet browser’s address bar to access the official website directly.
- Use an ad-blocking extension when performing internet searches. Most internet browsers allow a user to add extensions, including extensions that block advertisements. These ad blockers can be turned on and off within a browser to permit advertisements on certain websites while blocking advertisements on others.
- Use domain protection services to notify businesses when similar domains are registered to prevent domain spoofing.
- Educate users about spoofed websites and the importance of confirming destination URLs are correct.
- Educate users about where to find legitimate downloads for programs provided by the business.