Phishing, malicious ads, crypto scams, YouTube is becoming the favorite platform for hackers, be vigilant


Mélina LOUPIA

May 21, 2024 at 5:10 p.m.

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Be careful when watching videos on YouTube, hackers are deploying malicious campaigns there - © PixieMe / Shutterstock

Be careful when watching videos on YouTube, hackers are deploying malicious campaigns there – © PixieMe / Shutterstock

With 2.4 billion active users in 2024, the video platform Youtube is increasingly invaded by malicious campaigns. Phishing, malware, cryptocurrency scams, cybercriminals are having a field day.

Over the years, YouTube, whose success has enabled the payment of 65 billion euros in 3 years to its content creators, has established itself as the main online video sharing platform, today reaching 2, 5 billion active users. Unfortunately, this global success also attracts the attention of cybercriminals, who have been able to take advantage of the evolution of the tools at their disposal to spread their malicious campaigns.

The rise of deepfake videos generated by artificial intelligence allows them to imitate personalities or events in an ultra-realistic manner, misleading viewers and thus spreading disinformation on a large scale. It is in this context that YouTube has become one of the new battlegrounds favored by hackers for their fraudulent activities.

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The main methods used by hackers on YouTube to trap their victims

Just like when you surf the internet or use websites, alertness should be your survival companion. YouTube is not exempt from phishing campaigns, malicious advertising and other scams. Knowing how to spot them allows you to avoid falling into their traps.

Attackers do not hesitate to use phishing campaigns specifically targeting YouTube content creators. They send them personalized emails in which they offer enticing, but fake, collaboration opportunities. Once trust is established, they share links to malware disguised as essential tools for their supposed collaboration, often leading to the theft of cookies or compromised accounts.

Another tactic is to compromise video descriptions by inserting malicious links masquerading as legitimate downloads of software related to games, productivity tools, or even antivirus programs. Users are then tricked into installing malware on their devices.

Hackers also have no qualms about hijacking popular YouTube channels, taken over through phishing or malware, to promote various types of threats like cryptocurrency scams involving fake giveaways that require an initial deposit of the share of the victims.

They also exploit user trust by creating websites that imitate companies known to offer illegitimate downloadable software.

Finally, social engineering via video content remains a classic, with the publication of tutorials or pirated software offers tricking Internet users into installing malicious programs disguised as practical tools.

Phishing campaigns are circulating on Facebook -© Kaspars Grinvalds /Shutterstock

Phishing campaigns are circulating on Facebook -© Kaspars Grinvalds /Shutterstock

YouTube’s infrastructure and business model, fertile ground for hackers

YouTube’s business model, relying on automated advertising and user-generated content, provides a gateway for cybercriminals to bypass conventional security measures.

The combination of automated advertising systems and a constant stream of new user-created videos makes it very difficult to effectively filter malicious content.

Hackers also exploit search engine optimization (SEO) mechanisms and automated uploads to improve the visibility of their harmful content on the platform. The very success of YouTube, which is largely based on the commitment of its community, is turning against it: the misleading comments posted by pirates, touting false good deals to better promote dangerous links, exploit recommendation algorithms. based on user activity.

So be extremely careful when clicking on a YouTube video or performing a search. Hackers are never far away and do not wish you well.

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YouTube is a video streaming platform on which any Internet user can upload their videos, watch those of other users, create their own thematic channel and develop their audience. A true icon of web 2.0, YouTube has evolved over the years and therefore maintains its popularity which is no longer in doubt.
Check out our YouTube tutorial series:

Youtube

YouTube is a video streaming platform on which any Internet user can upload their videos, watch those of other users, create their own thematic channel and develop their audience. A true icon of web 2.0, YouTube has evolved over the years and therefore maintains its popularity which is no longer in doubt.
Check out our YouTube tutorial series:

Source : Avast

Mélina LOUPIA

Mélina LOUPIA

Ex-corporate journalist, the world of the web, networks, connected machines and everything that is written on the Internet whets my appetite. From the latest TikTok trend to the most liked reels, I come from...

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Ex-corporate journalist, the world of the web, networks, connected machines and everything that is written on the Internet whets my appetite. From the latest TikTok trend to the most liked reels, I come from the Facebook generation that still fascinates the internal war between Mac and PC. As a wise woman, the Internet, its tools, practices and regulation are among my favorite hobbies (that, lineart, knitting and bad jokes). My motto: to try it is to adopt it, but in complete safety.

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