I read recent reports about how the famous actor Johnny Depp died in a car crash – this is a scam!
I guess the cybercriminals didn’t get enough traffic out of luring the soft-hearted to fake “Save Haiti” websites so they created their own high-traffic story.
Oh don’t worry. Unlike many of the cybercriminal schemes where just visiting a website will attempt a barrage of PC infections, this one lures you into wanting to download their “mother lode of infectious code.”
As of Sunday January 24, 2010, the search term: johnny depp car crash, was searched over 13 million times. It was even a trendy topic on Twitter which helped add fuel to the fire.
Like I’ve stated before, hackers or cybercriminals, which ever you prefer, know how the human mind works. They know we initially read a story, then if there’s pictures or better yet – a video, we’re going the distance for the full effect.
If you Google, johnny depp car crash, you’ll see one listing from CNN. This might lead you to believe that this story is true. If CNN covers it, it must be true. However, clicking on the link to the “CNN” story, will take you to a website that looks like CNN, but it’s not.
The site simply whets your appetite for blood and guts.
After reading that story, you’ll probably want to see some of the videos taken of the car crash. Maybe you can see the famed actor dead on the ground or something almost as gruesome. So your next search is for videos of the Johnny Depp car crash.
Many sites were offering those.
Unfortunately, or fortunately, you couldn’t watch the video unless you had the correct video software – and you could download it right there, if you really, really wanted to watch the video.
They got you. The video software (codec) wasn’t really going to let you view the video. What it was going to do was let the hacker have access to your PC – whenever they wanted it.
The moral of this story is, don’t believe everything you hear or read. Don’t be a victim of a scam that some cybercriminal has concocted. If some famous person has passed away, watch TV. Go to CNN.com and search for it there. Don’t fall into the bottomless pit of despair by allowing yourself to be lured into one of these scenarios.
Remember, that as a website owner, your site could become infected by something you did online, a story you read, or a video driver you downloaded. That could be more damaging than not being totally up-to-date on whether or not someone famous died.
That’s just my opinion, what’s yours?