A new scam circulating on WhatsApp on Thursday (19) promises Netflix for free during the period of isolation and quarantine to prevent the outbreak of the new coronavirus. The fake message says that it frees access to the streaming service after the user makes the supposed free registration on Netflix through the indicated link, which is not official and is potentially malicious. According to an analysis by the dfndr lab, a laboratory specializing in digital security at PSafe, the address of the scam has more than 1 million hits and shares.
READ: Coronavirus: WhatsApp launches website on how to prevent Covid-19
There are no official free Netflix records during the Covid-19 pandemic. Based on other similar scams, it is possible to conclude that the objective of cybercriminals is to make money from fraudulent ads or steal user data, in a scam known as phishing.
WhatsApp scam promises free Netflix during coronavirus isolation – Photo: Rubens Achilles / dnetc
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Netflix decided to release access to its platform of films and series for the period of isolation from people, but registration is for a short time! Run at https://netflix-usa.net/
According to Google Trends, a tool that monitors Internet searches, the search for terms such as «netflix isolation», «netflix frees access» and «netflix free» has increased suddenly over the past 24 hours. On Twitter, users also reacted to the false information – see some posts at the end of the story.
Google Trends shows peak search for «netflix isolation» – Photo: Reproduction / Google Trends
Netflix offers online tools to detect scams with the streaming company’s name. When you suspect an alleged offer from Netflix, you can check the veracity on the official website (netflix.com/signup/planform), which lists the plans available on the platform.
Telephone service is available on 0800 761 4631 from 8 am to 11 pm (Brasília time). Subscribers can also follow the tips on the service’s security page (netflix.com/security) in the event of a strange Netflix account move.
Scams take advantage of the new coronavirus
Other fake messages circulating on WhatsApp take advantage of the new coronavirus pandemic to deceive users. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the Covid-19 outbreak brought an infodemia of disinformation, due to the exaggerated amount of news on the subject. Therefore, it is important to question messages that are routed on WhatsApp, as they may be rumors.
This is the case of a text that promises free distribution of more than 1 million units of gel alcohol produced by Ambev, with a link for registration. The brewer is actually going to donate the product to public hospitals, but the address with the alleged information is false and resembles a phishing scam.
In a statement on the official Facebook page, the company clarified that the current on WhatsApp about Ambev distributing alcohol gel is false. The product will actually be delivered to public hospitals in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Brasília for internal use by health workers.
There are also text records offering free diagnosis for the coronavirus that causes Covid-19, with verification forms or supposed free consultations with doctors on WhatsApp. The links that accompany the messages are fake and also have the potential to steal users’ data.
In times of crisis, it is common to increase the circulation of fake news and false currents through social networks. According to the director of the dfndr lab Emilio Simoni, it is important to doubt texts that do not accompany links to official sources of health agencies, such as the WHO or the Ministry of Health, or news of vehicles known to the press.
When accessing pages to enter personal data, it is important to verify that the address starts with the HTTPS code, which has an extra layer of security than HTTP. It is also always worth keeping an antivirus installed on your phone, keeping the operating system up to date and taking extra care when using public Wi-Fi networks.
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@NetflixBrasil your beautiful … There’s a link on WhatsApp saying that netflix is available for free for the isolation period. Proceed? Look at the message. Netflix decided to give access to its platform of films and series for the period of isolation of people, but
– March 19, 2020
Netflix to stay for free during these days was going to be msm good !!
– March 13, 2020