Everyone’s done it – in the rush to get on a website, typing in a URL that is close, just a letter or two off, from your intended destination.
Cybercriminals take advantage of this everyday mistake in a concept called typosquatting. They look for common misspellings and easy-to-make typos of major brand names, and use those URLs to create websites that look exactly like the intended page, where they then try to trick the user into giving away personal or financial information.
Common scams include asking you to enter personal information to win a prize, or informing you of a computer infection in order to get you to download a (malware-laden) file to fix it.
Sophos Security Advisor James Lyne joined Tom Costello of NBC Nightly News to talk about the risks of typosquatting, precautions to take to keep yourself safe from it, and why it is such a simple but useful concept for hackers.
Typosquatting isn’t big or clever, but it’s effective
Check out the full NBC Nightly News segment below: