Scammers are stealing $80m per month through fake giveaways and surveys

A report by Group-IB has found threat actors are making $80m a month by impersonating known brands asking people to participate in phoney surveys and giveaways.

According to Bleeping Computer, the scam themes that were found were the typical and ‘trustworthy’ fake surveys and giveaways from popular brands.

The report found there are currently 60 known scam networks that use targeted links in their campaigns, which impersonate a total of 121 brands in false giveaways.

Each network was found to use an average of 70 different Internet domain names as part of their campaigns – however, some found bigger success with fewer domains. Group-IB researchers were able to examine where the visitors who host fraudulent content come from – with India having the highest traffic at 42.2%, Thailand at 7% and Indonesia at 4.4%.

Group-IB said in its report, “The largest detected network in terms of the number of domain names included 232 domain names, according to the findings of Group-IB’s DRP team. It is possible that not all of the websites remain active. Such a large number of domains is created to make it possible to redirect the traffic to a related resource as soon as possible if an active one is blocked. This way, the fraudsters ensure continuous operation of their scamming scheme.”

Group-IB noted that scammers target their victims through contextual advertising, advertising on legal and completely rogue sites, forum posts, SMS, mailouts, pop-up notifications and social media posts.

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