PS5 and Xbox Series X order scam

The release of the PS5 and Xbox Series X video game consoles has generated many scam attempts

Sony’s PS5 and Microsoft’s Xbox Series X are finally out. But there have also been many scam attempts

PS5

These consoles were eagerly awaited by video game fans, but the stocks available were clearly not up to the mark. Many people have been unsuccessful in getting their new consoles from regular merchants, either physical or online.

This has led some fans to search the internet for alternatives. Crooks have understood this and have created hundreds of scams around the PS5 or Xbox Series X.

Fraudulent sites promising the much sought-after consoles

First of all, pre-orders on official sales sites quickly reached their thresholds. The crooks then created fraudulent sales sites promising players to order the coveted consoles.

These scam sites could display the name of a completely unknown merchant or be a copy of a legitimate site, that copy being owned by crooks.

To recognize a fraudulent site, special attention should be paid to the following points:

  • The look of the website: Unlike long established official websites, scam websites are often created for the occasion. We can note a lack of finish and professionalism in the presentation.
  • “Suspicious” selling points: To justify their stock while the PS5 and Xbox Series X are out of stock with all other merchants, fraudulent sites will advance dubious reasons. For example: We recovered a lot of unsold items from Amazon.
  • Selling prices below market prices: The PS5 and Xbox Series X consoles have just been released. No serious seller will sell them at a bargain price

For now, the best option is to be patient and wait until other PS5 or Xbox Series X consoles are available for sale from a recognized dealer.

In any case, the crooks play on the eagerness of the players to get a PS5 or an Xbox Series X. Sometimes unfortunately also on their gullibility.

Covid-19 scam : Fake tax refund email

A tax refund in compensation for confinement? Unfortunately this is a scam

Have you received an e-mail telling you that you are eligible for a tax refund? Put this email directly in the trash, it is phishing aimed at obtaining personal information such as bank details for example.

tax refund
Crédit : Nick Youngson

Scammers are taking advantage of both the Covid-19 pandemic and the tax reporting season to launch a new phishing campaign. They posed as a government service and sent a large number of emails across the country. This email indicates that taxpayers are eligible for a tax refund. What a godsend in these difficult and uncertain times!

To benefit from it, the scammers then invite people to click on a link that redirects to another site. But this site imitates an official government page. Then, Internet users are invited to enter their bank details in order to benefit from the tax refund.

But this is a scam. Instead of receiving a tax refund, people who would have given their bank card number will see themselves deducting money unduly and probably with impunity.

Always be vigilant when you receive an unsolicited email, you are announcing surprising good news! To thwart these scam attempts, have the right reflexes:

  • An email that begins with “dear client / client” instead of using your last name is a bad sign
  • Spelling mistakes or questionable sentences are unacceptable
  • The website address should be familiar. Pay attention to details and you will probably see that this is an imitation of an official government site.

However, if you have entered your banking information on the fake website, immediately block your credit card. This will avoid any future direct debits.

Users of Gmail, Google’s email, are victims of phishing attempts

Gmail users are not safe from phishing. Indeed, the e-mail platform of Google is also the prey of a phishing attempt, unfortunately quite well orchestrated.

To understand this phishing on Gmail users, let’s begin by reminding what phishing is. Who has never received an e-mail indicating a refund due to an overpayment? Or a mail from a bank requiring you to enter your password as part of an audit procedure?

The crooks send thousands of e-mails like these, pretending to be an official entity (Bank, Microsoft, Apple, …). Their goal is that a victim believes this and discloses personal information (Credit card number, password, …). This scam on the internet is what is called phishing.

Phishing applied to Gmail

In the case of Gmail, the phishing attempt looks a bit different. The method is about sending a message to the person to be trapped. For more efficiency, scammers used a corrupted account belonging to a legitimate owner known by the potential victim.

Gmail login

This mail invites the recipient to open a document stored on “Google drive”, the cloud storage service of the Internet giant. This service is pretty well known to familiar Gmail users. But after having clicked on the link, the Gmail login page appears of instead of the expected document.

Surprised, the person thinks he / she has been disconnected and then enter again his email address and password. Unfortunately, this is where the fraud takes place. It was not an untimely disconnection but a misleading page displayed by the crooks after having clicked on the request to access Google Drive.

Skilled users were trapped

The scammers have now recovered the login / password and then rapidly access the victim’s mailbox. They check e-mails for sensitive data. They also take advantage of this access by stealing the address book of the victim. The scammers can then reproduce the process of such phishing attempt.

This phishing attempt targeting Gmail accounts is subtle and many skilled users get caught. A more discrete visible element of this fraud attempt is the URL used. This is different from the normal address: https://mail.google.com. But scammers know that we don’t always pay attention to the content of the bar at the top of the internet browsers.

Be vigilant Gmail users! And pay attention especially if one of your contacts invite you to view a document on Google drive.