Scam of the day – July 23, 2013 – Royal baby scams

After a pregnancy that seemed like it went on forever and a long day of baby waiting, Kate Middleton, the Duchess of  Cambridge gave birth to an 8 pound six ounce baby boy at 4:24 p.m. local time in London’s St Mary’s Hospital, yesterday July 22, 2013.  The new baby will  the third in line to the British crown behind his grandfather, Prince Charles and his father, Prince William.  Interest in the royal birth has been incredibly high around the world and unfortunately, this makes the event an opportunity for identity thieves and scam artists, the only criminals we refer to as artists.  It is not unusual for scammers and identity thieves to use any event that has a large public interest to set traps for the unwary.  In fact, there were significant scams and identity theft schemes tied to nude pictures of Kate back in September of 2012.  What scammers and identity thieves do is they set up phony websites and emails that lure you to click on links or download attachments that purport to provide videos or photographs that curious people are eager to see.  In this particular case they will take the form of promised delivery room videos or exclusive first photographs or videos of the new royal baby.  If you click on the tainted links or download the tainted malware, you will not get the promised videos or photographs, but you will, unfortunately succeed in downloading keystroke logging malware that can steal all of the personal information from your computer and provide it to an identity thief who will use it to make you a victim of identity theft.

TIPS

Don’t fall for this scam.  Never click on links or download attachments unless you are absolutely sure that they are legitimate.  Links or downloads in emails are never reliable if they come from strangers and even if they come from friends to your email or as a posting to your Facebook page, you cannot be sure that your friend’s email or Facebook account has not been hacked by an identity thief posing as your real friend.  The best place to go, if you are curious about matters such as pictures of the new royal baby is to responsible websites that you know are legitimate, such as those of major news agencies or, if you have an urge for gossip, consider going to www.tmz.com which is a legitimate source for gossip.  In fact, it is already posting the baby’s official birth announcement.  Finally, make sure that you not only have anti-virus software and anti-malware software, but that you keep your security software up to date with the latest patches.