Most people are unaware of the risks involved when searching for celebrity and entertainment news. “Click baiting” is a way to get someone’s attention online. They engage with potential identity theft victims by offering something that is too intriguing to ignore–like messages that claim new videos, shocking information or scandalous news. Click bait often leads to a sketchy website or a link that downloads malware on the user’s computer or smart phone.
For the eighth year, security technology company McAfee has identified the “Most Dangerous Celebrities” whose names and images are most widely used by scammers as click bait. The riskiest personalities on the web are:
- Jimmy Kimmel (comedian, actor, talk show host)
- Armin van Buuren (Dutch DJ and music producer)
- Ciara (singer-songwriter, dancer, Grammy winner)
- Flo Rida (rapper, People’s Choice award winner)
- Bruce Springsteen (rock legend, 20 Grammys, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame)
- Blake Shelton (country singer, judge on The Voice, husband of Miranda Lambert)
- Britney Spears (pop singer, former child actor)
- Jon Bon Jovi (singer-songwriter, philanthropist)
- Chelsea Handler (comedian, writer, talk show host)
- Christina Aguilera (pop singer, actress, Grammy winner)
People can do their part by being vigilant in practicing safe online behavior. Better Business Bureau (BBB) serving Central, Coastal, Southwest Texas and the Permian Basin along with McAfee recommend the following:
- Don’t download videos from suspect sites. Most news clips you’d want to see can easily be found on official video sites and don’t require you to download anything.
- Beware of clicking on third party links. Before you click, hoover the cursor over the link to see where it will take you. Don’t click on links leading to unfamiliar websites. You should access content directly from official websites of content providers. For example, visit ABC.com to find Jimmy Kimmel’s latest episodes.
- Always use password protection on your phone and other mobile devices. If you don’t and your phone is lost or stolen, anyone who picks up the device could have access to your personal information online.
- Using the cloud is like using someone else’s computer – and some friends may have good security while others may not. Consumers should treat the cloud as any other asset that requires protecting.
- Don’t click just because a “friend” shared it. It might not actually be your friends who are liking or sharing on social media. Their account may have been hacked by scammers attempting to spread phishing or malware links.