Cybercriminals Kick Off World Cup with Spam and Online Scams

Norton Reports World Cup Spam Increases By 27 percent

Jun 25, 2010, 00:01 ET from Norton

CULVER CITY, Calif., June 25 /PRNewswire/ --


Soccer fans are a big target for cyber crooks. Spam related to the FIFA 2010 World Cup has soared by around 27 percent since April, according to Norton from Symantec. To date, the company has identified numerous scams, phishing sites and malicious spam related to the world's largest sporting event, and alerts fans on its 2010 Net Threat website.

Other online threats related to the 2010 World Cup include offers of fake game tickets, videos purportedly showing highlights of the games that only infect computers with malware, and bogus FIFA product offers.

"When South Africa was first announced as the 2010 FIFA World Cup host country in 2005 we began seeing the start of FIFA-related scams," said Adam Palmer, Norton Lead Cyber Security Advisor. "As the World Cup drew closer, we started to see message volume increase."

Symantec has also seen an increase in cybercriminals' use of phishing scams, malicious attachments and "419 scams" (a.k.a., Advance-fee frauds) to target unsuspecting fans. As the competition progresses towards the final match in July, Symantec experts expect World Cup-related spam and scams to increase.


Norton Lead Cyber Security Advisor Adam Palmer and Symantec Response experts are on hand to share tips with users on how they can protect themselves from World Cup-related scams, including:

1. Use a trusted safe search tool like Norton Safe Web to warn you about malicious sites

2. Delete unsolicited or suspicious e-mails or text messages

3. Be wary about World Cup promotions and offers on social media sites

4. Stick to legitimate or familiar websites when surfing the Internet for information about the 2010 World Cup

5. Stay up-to-date about the latest news on World Cup threats so you know what to look out for


Interviews available upon request


Gerritt Hoekman

Edelman for Norton