Cybersecurity risks you should watch out for while streaming
With the increase in entertainment content from thousands of streaming apps, cybercriminals have found greener pastures. They are honing their skills every day to steal information, especially from established apps like Netflix, Hulu, Disney+ and others.
The streaming business continues to thrive, and even with geo-restrictions, streamers can access content. For example, there would be no restrictions for anyone who wants to watch Disney+ Hotstar in the US. All you need to do is subscribe to a VPN.
Unfortunately, cybercriminals have gone so far as to exploit VPN components, and streamers are vulnerable to phishing, malware, or spyware attacks. But if you’re using a reliable VPN, that shouldn’t be a problem.
But the fact remains that the probability of having your sensitive information exposed and losing some critical assets is high when you log in.
There are many cybersecurity risks you need to watch out for when streaming. And as you become a movie buff, someone might be waiting to take advantage of you, learn how;
1. Phishing attacks
Simply put, phishing is internet fraud where cybercriminals steal data. For example, if an attacker wants to steal a streamer’s login credentials, they lure streamers into opening a link that looks like a streaming platform, a link that directs to a malicious website, or even an email. fraudulent email. According to researchers, phishing is a major risk that threatens Netflix streamers.
When the streamer logs in, the attacker asks for sensitive information such as password, username, credit card details or any other billing information; any other account linked to your information is hacked in no time.
It’s nearly impossible for most streamers to find out about phishing scams. To stay safe, you can install an anti-phishing toolbar or anti-virus software, use firewalls, and always check sites for security.
2. Platform Hacks
Streaming apps have been targeted by cybercriminals, especially those offering illegal pirated content. And since most of the viewers want to watch movies and shows without subscription, they download these apps for free content.
While doing so, they also download malware unknowingly. The malware then infects other devices which can expose your personal information. This is why it is advisable to use a reliable streaming platform.
Identity theft has become one of the major serious threats to streaming apps. Virtually everyone uses one email for all their accounts. Streamers have their accounts compromised.
Interestingly, you’ll find millennials sharing their passwords, or others might even share such passwords in their household without much concern for online theft. This is common when people are simulcasting. You may think you are saving money, but it will turn into a disaster.
A good example that has had to deal with identity theft is Disney Plus. Within a week of its launch, thousands of its accounts have been hacked and sold.
Despite the warnings, people keep reusing their passwords, which could be a doorway to more trouble.
By the end of June 2021, Kaspersky had already detected around 93,000 infections from top streaming apps. They have targeted the original shows with many fans, like Money Heist, to spread their evil deeds. Streamers have an increased appetite for getting their favorites; the same way cyber criminals have their schemes suited to make the most of it.
For those who like to play games online, you may find fake installed games or even other programmed content promising to let you stream or play such games for free. These games may initially be illegally copied. But in reality, they are hackers trying to steal your information. To stay safe from malware, you can ensure that your antivirus software is updated from time to time.
5. Credential stuffing
Cybercriminals have recently embraced credential stuffing. They use a list of compromised viewer credentials to gain access to user accounts. It is common for viewers to reuse their passwords or emails, and if the information is exposed, it gives hackers more time to log into their account; this is called a brute force attack.
According to research, streaming apps have been the primary target of credential stuffing, with significant attempts around 2018. In 2018, there were three credential stuffing attacks on streaming apps. streaming. It was obvious that the cybercriminals could have tested the credentials before bringing them to market in an attempt to log in.
Unfortunately, this type of attack has been responsible for cases in large financial institutions. Therefore, it would pay to stay safe. You should have unique passwords for your accounts, also be sure to update operating systems or use multi-factor authentication.
The pandemic hit has sparked more desperation for new entertainment. And content providers did, with the number of originals, popular shows, movies, documentaries, among others. While it’s fun, everyone streaming should be aware of the above risks.
Prevention is better than cure!
The next time you sit down on your couch to watch your favorite movie, take the time to stay safe; you can change passwords or ensure that you are subscribed to verifiable emails. Again, avoid clicking on suspicious links. And if need be, use a reliable VPN and avoid providing your information to untrusted platforms.