From our friends over at BitDefender:
Madonna, Cameron Diaz and Barack Obama also amongst the top personalities used in cyber scams according to BitDefender analysis of 25 million spam messages
American comedian and TV host Jay Leno is the most dangerous Hollywood celebrity in cyberspace, according to analysis of 25 million spam messages by BitDefender®, an award winning provider of innovative internet security solutions. After Leno, results revealed Madonna and Cameron Diaz to be the next most frequently used personalities by cyber criminals in spreading spam. Barack Obama and Stephen King also make the top ten.
BitDefender’s analysis found most of the spam messages focused around medicine and the purchasing of pills but come with enticing subjects such as ‘Jay Leno found taking drugs’ or ‘George Clooney's Girls.’ Other celebrities mentioned but ranking outside the top ten include David Beckham, Tiger Woods, Miley Cyrus, Meryl Streep and Kanye West. Interestingly, other celebrities previously used frequently in spamming attacks such as Oprah Winfrey, Justin Bieber and Angelina Jolie are now missing from current criminal campaigns.
“Cyber criminals follow the latest trends just as consumers do and they use these and the names of popular celebrities in their campaigns in order to lure people to websites that are full of malicious software (malware),” said Catalin Cosoi, Head of the BitDefender Online Threats Lab. “As a result, users searching for the latest videos or pictures can instead end up with a host of problems on their computer. We advise all users to have a strong internet security solution in place in order to combat the wide variety of online threats.”
Spam messages mentioning Osama Bin Laden in early May were also used by cyber criminals to impersonate messages coming from government agencies. Recipients were asked to disclose their home address, banking information and other sensitive data that would allegedly clear them of accusations of terrorism.