The countdown for the 2012 Olympics has already started. But athletes and sports lovers are not the only ones engulfed in sports fever. Cyber criminals are in the game too.

Big-ticket sporting events have always been irresistible draws for cyber criminals. The Cricket World Cup and IPL were cases in point.

Now, with an international sporting event of such massive scale and with the Internet as a platform for sports lovers, cyber criminals are queuing up to trap unsuspecting Internet users and sports enthusiasts eager about the Olympics.

You could be snared into downloading malware, buying products and so on.

“Typically, nefarious online activities related to major sporting events begin as early as a year before the actual event takes place,” say experts at Symantec, a software security firm.

With just a few days left to the 2012 Olympic Games, Symantec is keeping its eye on the ball and is not ruling out proliferation of targeted attacks.

The security firm has uncovered a new scam where spammers invite participation in a sporting event, as co-coordinators, welcome partners and more. “And it’s not just email that can lead users astray. The creators of rogue antivirus are attempting to “poison” Web search engine results. It started as early as last year with search terms related to this event returning a large number of poisoned links,’ say security experts.

Experts expect attacks on mobile phones too. The growing convergence of technology means it is unlikely that cybercriminals will continue to neglect what is a potentially huge platform for their activities, say experts. 

(This article was published on July 21, 2012)
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