Almost immediately after President Obama reported the death of Osama bin Laden, internet scammers set up fake videos, photos, Google ads, and news stories in an attempt to lure unsuspecting folks onto their malware and virus infected websites. Search results like “Osama Bin Laden Dead” and “Obama Address” are being targeted. On facebook, fake links to video footage of bin Laden's death have been circulating for the past couple of days. When facebook users click on the fake links, their personal information is exposed, and malware is automatically downloaded onto their computers.
Oregon Attorney General John Kroger cautions Oregonians to be careful when searching the internet for footage or news about bin Laden’s death, and offers the following advice:
- Be cautious of links from emails, social networking sites, or Google searches. If the URL and the search topic don't relate in some obvious way it's best to avoid it. Pop-up ads related to popular internet searches commonly carry malware.
- Do not be enticed by fake offers of "free" stuff, surveys or contests. Never provide personal information through pop-up ads.
- If a website redirects you to download software or "codec" in order to view a video, stop. These are signs of a scam.
- Make sure your computer has up to date anti-virus software. Perform a virus scan on a regular basis.
If you would like to receive regular scam alerts to your email account from the Oregon Attorney General join the Oregon Scam Alert Network.
The Personal Injury Law Update is a service of D'Amore Law Group.