Cyber criminals are reportedly turning to Twitter to target their latest victims.
Twitter has become one of the fastest growing phenomena of the internet
They are launching attacks hidden in “tweets” and tiny URL addresses, according to internet security group McAfee.
More than 14 million computers have been hacked into this quarter, says McAfee, a 16% increase over last quarter’s rise – meaning an average of 150,000 are infected every day.
Twitter: any time, anywhere
Twitter’sgrowth in popularity has made it a new target for the cyber criminals.
Facebook and MySpace, meanwhile, remain strong attack targets for web hackers.
“Cyber criminals are like traditional criminals in that they want to make money,” McAfee’s security analyst Greg Day told Sky News Online.
“They do that either by selling your information – for example banking details – or through marketing.
“The best way to get the most information is by going to the area which is most people-dense.
“Twitter is almost like the airport to a terrorist – everyone’s there. So if the criminal’s looking for the maximum money, that’s where he or she will go.”
Cyber criminals are like traditional criminals in that they want to make money, either by selling banking detail information or through marketing.
Greg Day, McAfee security analyst
So how can the twitterer be protected?
“It’s hard to say because some of the companies that are involved in shortening the URLs for Twitter are themselves being hacked into.
“The best thing is to be aware and to keep an eye on your account to make sure you’re not being diverted to somewhere where the codes have been tampered with.
“And, obviously, make sure you have a secure password – not something that’s easy to guess or tap into.”