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Christmas 2019, online shopping at risk: pay attention as entering URLs

At Christmas of 2019 there is a new danger for those who have chosen to buy gifts online. Venafi discovers that over 100,000 URLs of leading web global sellers othat have been imitated with typosquatting

At Christmas 2019 there is an extra danger for those who are about to buy gifts online: over 100,000 domains of big sellers on the web have been “typosquatted”. This was discovered by Venafi’s cyber security experts. But what is typosquatting? Simply, it means that cyber criminals have created very similar sites, usually with malicious intent, exploiting the most frequent typing errors in writing addresses. In fact, the victim is convinced that he is on the page he chose, but instead he is on a different one. The purposes are various: from stealing credentials and other information, to inoculating malware. Moreover, cybercrime has provided the typosquatted sites with valid TLS (Transport Layer Security) certificates, which theoretically ensure their veracity and reliability against phishing and computer frauds.

Cybersecurity experts: Not all domains have been “typosquatted” for malicious purposes. Some, however, could be used by cybercrime to steal information or spread malware

The cyber security researchers, moreover, have carried out capillary checks by taking a sample of 20 leading online sellers in the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Germany and France. Overall, they found that 109,045 typosquatted domains but with valid TLS certificates. Most of these refer to activities in the US, followed by the UK, and the other two European countries. Not everyone, however, could be dangerous. According to Venafi, in fact, some URLs probably serve legitimate purposes. However, there are also those that cybercrime could use fraudulently. Taking advantage of the arrival of Christmas and the frenzy of online shopping linked to the holidays. Therefore, be careful if you decide to shop online. The risk is that a theoretical saving can turn into a very high cost.

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