Heads up Instagram users! Here is another scam preying on your accounts. As discovered by researchers, a new Instagram phishing attack is in the wild that steals users’ login credentials. To do so, the attackers bluff users with fake copyright infringement alerts.
Instagram Phishing Attack Exploiting Copyright Alert
Reportedly, researchers from Sophos have discovered a new phishing attack targeting Instagram users. This time, the scammers strive to steal users’ login credentials by tricking them with bogus copyright infringement notices.
As revealed via a recent blog post, this scam exploits a regular Instagram user upon receiving a notice for violation of certain terms. Since such acts can lead to account suspension, the users tend to rush up to prove their account legitimacy. That is what the attackers take advantage of in this phishing campaign.
Specifically, the attack begins with phishing emails sent to Instagram users that notifies them of copyright infringement.
As the email mentions of a deadline of 24 hours, it naturally panics the user to quickly click on the ‘Copyright Objection Form’ button. They then reach an intermediate page reiterating copyright infringement.
The web page then tempts the user to ‘Appeal’, clicking on this finally lands the user to the actual phishing website. The website presented by the researchers bears a long domain name – enough to hide the bogus end part of the domain from the address bar. Consequently, the user only sees the starting few characters that look legit. The domain also bears HTTPS, thus tricking the user to believe in its legitimacy.
Finally, as the user clicks on ‘Appeal’, a new web page appears asking the password and the complete date of birth (additive information) from the user.
Entering the details and clicking on the ‘Submit’ button eventually redirects the user to the actual Instagram login page. Therefore, a user may never really notice this attack, unless he or she is vigilant enough to note the minute details highlighted above.
Stay Wary Of Instagram Scams
Instagram is one of the most influential social media platforms with a large userbase. Perhaps, that’s why the scammers have directed their focus towards Instagram users. Through this single platform, the attackers can gain access to personal information of the users – that too – mostly genuine. Just recently, the researchers found a phishing campaign tricking Instagram users with fake login alerts.
Users must stay cautious about the emails they receive. Whether it is about copyright infringement, login alert, or any other notice, they must verify the notice prior to taking any action.
Users must keep themselves well-informed about Instagram policies by regularly visiting the Instagram help pages.