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Phishing & Spam Likely to Increase with 2010 World Cup

As the football World Cup for 2010 is about to begin, it is expected that many game lovers would get messed up trying to procure tickets. With the announcement of fixtures and teams for the sports event, people's excitement for the game has boosted. This, together with South Africa's large Internet connectivity could lead to an increase in phishing and spam attacks using the World Cup theme, warns Symantec.

Gordon Love, Regional Director for Africa at Symantec, states that since the fixtures for the 2010 World Cup are finalized, people will quickly buy the tickets and in large numbers. In this rush, some who cannot obtain tickets easily might resort to unauthorized mediums or follow unsolicited e-mails that promise the tickets, says Love, as reported by Mybroadband on December 7, 2009.

Love further says that such illegitimate ways to get the tickets could mean ending up with counterfeit tickets. In addition, they could result in fans losing personal credit card information or money to cyber criminals. Love concludes that fans must therefore be vigilant, browse only genuine websites, and buy tickets through legitimate agents.

Furthermore, spam mails surrounding current events could pose worse threats during 2010 compared to 2009 as the year would feature not only the FIFA World Cup but also the Winter Olympics. Both these events are likely to be lucrative targets for phishers and spammers.

Symantec in its 2008 yearly Internet Security Threat Report indicated how countries introducing Internet connection encountered an instant rise in online attacks. This, according to Symantec, was because cyber criminals exploited security flaws and breaches emanating from end-users' inadequate network security. The risk was highest for countries like South Africa, Turkey, Poland and Brazil, Symantec reported.

Consequently, Symantec has advised people in South Africa certain basic tips to guard themselves from possible Internet attacks involving the 2010 FIFA World Cup. The tips are - sport lovers shouldn't believe e-mails outright that promise extravagantly since they could be from cyber criminals trying to entice them into visiting malevolent websites and revealing personal information. People should purchase tickets only from sellers registered with FIFA.

Related article: Phishing With A Redirector Code

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