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Heartless Hackers Target Queen Elizabeth II

Phishing Scam Tricks Mourners

The entire world has been mourning the death of England’s Queen, even some hackers from the dark web. And quite unconscionable, some criminal hackers have been using the Queen’s death in their illicit scams. Reportedly, some actors from the dark web have found a malicious way to capitalize on the passing of the late Queen Elizabeth II.

A recent phishing scam has sprung up since her death was announced on September 8th, 2022, utilizing Microsoft. Targeted individuals, in the name of the Queen, are lured to malicious themed websites that steal account credentials.

The revealed phishing attacks are carried out using the accounts of Microsoft’s clients, where the hackers trick the tech giant’s customers to reveal their multi-factor authentication (MFA) codes. Once the victims unsuspectingly give access to their accounts, the threat actors steal private data that they can sell on the dark web, and use in other scamming campaigns.

Proofpoint’s security analysts recently disclosed that numerous individuals were the recipients of messages from purportedly Microsoft. According to the invitation, Microsoft had created an “artificial technology hub” in the honor of Queen Elizabeth II.

Phishing Scam Honors Queen

Further, the Proofpoint research team revealed that the criminal hackers had posed as “the Microsoft team”. The phishing scam was established to play on the emotional event that has enveloped the entire globe. Mourners were being directed to post their messages to so-called established memorial board “in honor of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II”.

However, once the targeted individuals click on the maliciously coded link they are redirected to a fake phishing landing page. On the fake website, they are then prompted to log in with their Microsoft credentials. The researchers revealed that the credential harvesting page harvests Microsoft email credentials and other MFA authentication information.

Proofpoint documented that the scam was launched through the reverse-proxy phishing-as-a-service (PaaS) platform called EvilProxy. With constant rotation, the adverts gets promoted on several dark web hacker’s forums. This popular platform makes hacking campaigns more successful, as it allows hacking groups to easily bypass MFA authentication.

The UK’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) had recently warned that the Queen’s death would be used by cyber criminals in phishing and other scamming schemes. Thus, individuals are warned to look out for emails, text messages, and other form of phishing scams.

According to the NCSC, emotion is the best arsenal for cyber criminals, as seen with the Ukraine and Russia war, with the establishment of dozens of fake charitable campaigns. Also, hackers usually bait victims to visit harmful websites that download viruses and malware, which steal sensitive information such as bank accounts and credit card information.

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