It's been three weeks since the news broke about the serious data breach at AshleyMadison.com. Hackers claimed to have stolen data relating to over 37 million users of the controversial website, targeted at married people looking for some extra-marital adventures.
Whilst the immediate concern for millions of users was the risk of their unaware partners finding out about their unfaithful intent, the main problem now is the number of cyber criminals who are taking advantage of the curious aspect of human nature.
Websites are springing up claiming to have the stolen account detail allowing users to check whether their personal information was part of the compromised data. Of course it's not that simple. Users may have to pay to access the data or asked to download the file. In both instance according to research carried out by the BBC, the information was false and contained links to websites hosting spy and malware.
This isn't the first time recently that cybercrime aka and miscreants had tried to take advantage of less than salubrious events involving sex. In August 2014 a number of websites published private (and in some cases, explicit) pictures taken from Apple's iCloud platform after hackers had carried out a sustained attack on users passwords. Celebrities including Kate Upton, Jennifer Lawrence and Kirsten Dunst suddenly found images of themselves that they probably never wanted to share in the public domain. This event, christened "The Fappenning, gave rise to a huge surge in searches for these pictures, and consequently the number of websites that promised to reveal all but just delivered danger for surfers. Interestingly, the website www.thefappenning.wiki is still one of the most popular sites using a new gTLD.
It only takes one user to download a malicious file or pay for access to something that doesn't exist to make it worthwhile for the cyber criminals. Make sure it's not you.