As the Super Bowl approaches this weekend hackers will be looking to target NFL fans. Protecting such a huge event is crucial both physically and in the cyber space. Fans watching the game in the stadium and from home are potential targets. Both the city of Atlanta and fans watching from home need to be vigilant. Security experts are calling the event a ‘worst-case scenario for cyber attacks’ and an opportunity for cybercriminals to pull huge scams and attacks.
The city of Atlanta is focusing on securing the cyber infrastructure. Last year, Atlanta was hit with a ransomware attack which shut down the city. With the game being held in Atlanta this year, the city began preparing weeks before to secure the cyberspace. The city is working with the NFL and the Department of Homeland Security to help secure the city.
The NFL Chief Security Officer Cathy Lanier has stated:
“We have no credible or specific threats that have been brought to our attention”
U.S Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen said:
“We’ve conducted more than 100 different physical and cybersecurity assessments and conducted outreach activities … so that any vulnerabilities can be addressed before they are exploited”
Game attendees, online watchers, shoppers, and anyone researching the game should be wary of the scams as well. Cybercriminals will be sending out malvertisements to people days before the games. Sending out phishing emails, spam campaigns, or setting up fake sites.
Fans unable to attend the game will be seeking out other means to watch the game. Many will do a simple google search of ‘watch super bowl for free’ and hundreds of links will pop up. Many of the links malicious in nature contain malware. Fans looking to place bets on the game can fall victim to fraudulent gambling sites and online forums. Further, other scams can include fake sites selling cheap NFL merchandise, people offering cheap/free tickets to see the game, or cheap hotel rooms.
Super bowl fans should be cautious this weekend of their online activity. Any emails or advertisements promising free tickets or discounted should not be clicked.
If your organization was hit with malware contact LIFARS today.