The Coronavirus pandemic has had a tremendous effect on the entertainment world with movie theaters shuttered until recently and concerts cancelled.  Enterprising musical artists have done a number of free online concerts which have been hardily welcomed by their fans.  As the old saying goes, no good deed goes unpunished and scammers are always taking advantage of everything that people are interested in so it should come as no surprise that scammers are posting phony announcements throughout social media of a wide variety of free concerts. These announcements often include language such as “Free Concert — Sign Up and Let Your Friends Know Too.”  Of course there is no concert.  The scammers are either seeking personal information such as the cell phone number of someone seeking to sign up for the free concert or using the link to the registration page for the concert to trick people into unwittingly downloading malware on to their computers such as ransomware or keystroke logging malware that can lead to identity theft.

Cell phone numbers are particularly valued by scammers both to send phony phishing text messages called Smishing or even to help sophisticated scammers avoid dual factor authentication by being the first step in enabling the scammer to avoid dual factor authentication by tricking your cell phone carrier into transferring your cell phone number to a phone controlled by the scammer through a technique called SIM swapping.  You can read more about SIM swapping in the archives of Scamicide.com

TIPS

Repeat after me, “trust me, you can’t trust anyone.”  Regardless of who appears to be posting these notices of free concerts, you can’t trust them to be accurate.  Even if they are forwarded to you by your real friends, their social media or  or other accounts may have been hacked.  If a performer is going to put on a free concert, the best place to confirm that this is true and to learn what you need to do to watch and listen to the concert is on the artist’s own website, but make sure that you are going to the real performer’s website and not a phony one set up by a scammer.  You also may wish to confirm the concert on the artist’s social media accounts.

For those of you receiving the Scam of the day through an email, I just want to remind you that if you want to see the ever increasing list of Coronavirus scams go to the first page of the http://www.scamicide.com website and click on the tab at the top of the page that indicates “Coronavirus Scams.”  Scamicide was recently cited by the New York Times as one of three top sources for information about Coronavirus related scams.

If you are not a subscriber to Scamicide.com and would like to receive daily emails with the Scam of the day, all you need to do is to go to the bottom of the initial page of http://www.scamicide.com and click on the tab that states “Sign up for this blog.”