On the way to Super Bowl 57? Beware of these scams
PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) — As Eagles fans plan for the Super Bowl, it’s important to be aware of everything from counterfeit tickets to fake merchandise to travel scams.
Super Bowl LVII will not only attract legions of football fans, but also legions of crooks.
First of all, never pay to enter a raffle or raffle unless you personally know and trust the organizer.
Second, Super Bowl tickets are mobile-only and the safest way to purchase is through one of the NFL’s three partner marketplaces, which are StubHub, SeatGeek, and Ticketmaster. On these websites, you will see a square NFL icon indicating that you are purchasing an NFL authenticated ticket.
“Fraudulent tickets are a huge concern, but certainly also for merchandise,” said Gary Brickhouse of GuidePoint Security. “It’s like, hey, click here to get your official t-shirt or official souvenir.”
If you click on the wrong link, you could end up with fake wares or malicious software on your computer called “malware” – giving hackers access to everything on your computer.
“Any activity that typically happens on your local computer the attacker would have access to, so maybe that’s how you gain access to your bank accounts or passwords,” Brickhouse said.
Phishing emails and smishing text messages are messages sent by cyber criminals to steal your information, money, and identity. Cybersecurity experts warn they are seeing an increase in personalization.
“You know, we see, ‘Hey, Gary, I know you’re a Philadelphia Eagles fan. You want to miss it.'”
So independently contact any sender to verify their legitimacy.
“Don’t click on the link in the email, go directly to the source through your browser,” Brickhouse said.
Typos or grammatical errors are often red flags.
“On social media, if someone IMs you directly and offers you special offers, it’s usually a scam,” said BrandShield’s Yoav Keren.
Fans flocking to the desert should also watch out for travel fraud. Airbnb says it’s seeing an increase in third-party scams.
“They’re faking some kind of fake sites that look like Airbnb, but it’s really not. And they’re trying to wire you money. And in this case, it’s money you don’t never see you again,” said Ben Breit of Airbnb.
The best protection? Send messages and pay only through the platform.
“Talk to this host, ask questions, make sure you’re comfortable with the location, the nature of the listing, they’re all different,” Breit said.
Airbnb says it has a dedicated big game support team that will focus on reservations in the Phoenix area and help fans in Philadelphia and Kansas City through Feb. 12.
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