Cybercriminals are using fake Black Friday deals to steal your credit card details

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With Black Friday 2021 right around the corner, cybercriminals are trying and scam as many people out of their credit card details, passwords, and other sensitive information, as possible, Kaspersky has warned.

The security giant claims the number of fake e-payment sites has more than doubled in the period between September 2021, where it tracked 627,560 phishing attacks of this nature, to October where it shot up to 1,935,905 - a 208% increase. 

Criminals will most often try and steal the identities of Amazon, but eBay, Alibaba and Mercado were also mentioned as popular choices among malicious actors. 

Black Friday scams

Black Friday has played a key role in this sudden surge in phishing attacks, but Kaspersky adds that the introduction of new payment systems in more countries around the world was also a major factor.

Mimicking e-payment pages aside, the report also notes a rise in spam letters, with Kaspersky spotting more than 220,000 spam emails containing the keyword “Black Friday” in the period between October 27 and November 19. 

There are many things consumers could (and should) do to stay secure when shopping online, especially at a time of heightened fraudulent activity. 

Kaspersky recommends a number of steps, including using a reliable security solution; refraining from opening email attachments or links in emails from banks, e-payment apps, or shopping portals - “especially if the sender insists on it”. 

Consumers should also always double-check the format of the URL or the spelling of the company name, as well as read reviews and check the domain’s registration data, before filling out any valuable information. 

Sead is a seasoned freelance journalist based in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. He writes about IT (cloud, IoT, 5G, VPN) and cybersecurity (ransomware, data breaches, laws and regulations). In his career, spanning more than a decade, he’s written for numerous media outlets, including Al Jazeera Balkans. He’s also held several modules on content writing for Represent Communications.