Home Cyber Attack New Instagram Phishing Attack Tricks Users With Fake Copyright Infringement Alerts

New Instagram Phishing Attack Tricks Users With Fake Copyright Infringement Alerts

by Abeerah Hashim
Instagram phishing attack

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.

Source: Sophos

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.

Source: Sophos

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.

Source: Sophos

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.

You may also like

Latest Hacking News

Privacy Preference Center

Necessary

The __cfduid cookie is used to identify individual clients behind a shared IP address and apply security settings on a per-client basis.

cookie_notice_accepted and gdpr[allowed_cookies] are used to identify the choices made from the user regarding cookie consent.

For example, if a visitor is in a coffee shop where there may be several infected machines, but the specific visitor's machine is trusted (for example, because they completed a challenge within your Challenge Passage period), the cookie allows Cloudflare to identify that client and not challenge them again. It does not correspond to any user ID in your web application, and does not store any personally identifiable information.

__cfduid, cookie_notice_accepted, gdpr[allowed_cookies]

Advertising

DoubleClick by Google refers to the DoubleClick Digital Marketing platform which is a separate division within Google. This is Google’s most advanced advertising tools set, which includes five interconnected platform components.

DoubleClick Campaign Manager: the ad-serving platform, called an Ad Server, that delivers ads to your customers and measures all online advertising, even across screens and channels.

DoubleClick Bid Manager – the programmatic bidding platform for bidding on high-quality ad inventory from more than 47 ad marketplaces including Google Display Network.

DoubleClick Ad Exchange: the world’s largest ad marketplace for purchasing display, video, mobile, Search and even Facebook inventory.

DoubleClick Search: is more powerful than AdWords and used for purchasing search ads across Google, Yahoo, and Bing.

DoubleClick Creative Solutions: for designing, delivering and measuring rich media (video) ads, interactive and expandable ads.

doubleclick

Analytics

The _ga is asssociated with Google Universal Analytics - which is a significant update to Google's more commonly used analytics service. This cookie is used to distinguish unique users by assigning a randomly generated number as a client identifier. It is included in each page request in a site and used to calculate visitor, session and campaign data for the sites analytics reports. By default it is set to expire after 2 years, although this is customisable by website owners.

The _gat global object is used to create and retrieve tracker objects, from which all other methods are invoked. Therefore the methods in this list should be run only off a tracker object created using the _gat global variable. All other methods should be called using the _gaq global object for asynchronous tracking.

_gid works as a user navigates between web pages, they can use the gtag.js tagging library to record information about the page the user has seen (for example, the page's URL) in Google Analytics. The gtag.js tagging library uses HTTP Cookies to "remember" the user's previous interactions with the web pages.

_ga, _gat, _gid