Cyber Security Authority: Stay vigilant during Valentine’s Day celebrations

February 11, 2024
1 min read

TLDR:

  • The Cyber Security Authority (CSA) in Ghana has warned the public to be vigilant and exercise caution when engaging in online activities during the Valentine’s Day celebration.
  • In a press statement, the CSA highlighted the various schemes used by cyber attackers to defraud unsuspecting victims, such as creating fake websites, impersonating businesses on social media, and sending fake emails or messages.
  • Scammers have been known to lure victims into sending money for discounted products that they never receive or receive in substandard forms. They also use romance scams to deceive victims into providing personal and financial information.
  • The CSA advised the public to be cautious of “too good to be true” deals on Valentine’s Day gifts and to use reputable online marketplaces or retailers. Individuals should also look for reviews and customer feedback before making an online purchase.
  • The CSA also encouraged individuals to verify the contact details of businesses through official websites or reliable sources instead of relying solely on search engine results. Furthermore, individuals should be alert for fake online shops and hyped advertisements on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Telegram.
  • The CSA provided additional guidance such as insisting on payment only after delivery and inspection, being wary of unsolicited messages or emails claiming to be from romantic partners, and not sharing personal information and bank details with anyone.
  • They also established a 24-hour Cybersecurity or Cybercrime Incident Reporting Point of Contact for reporting cybercrimes and seeking guidance and assistance on online activities.

The Cyber Security Authority (CSA) in Ghana has cautioned the public to exercise caution and due diligence in their online activities amidst the Valentine’s Day celebration, as cyber attackers are known to use the occasion to defraud unsuspecting victims through various schemes. The CSA highlighted that at least GHC 3,558,940.00 was lost in 2023 through online shopping and romance scams. Scammers create fake websites or online shops, impersonate legitimate businesses on social media, and offer heavily discounted packages to entice victims to send money. Victims either never receive the items or receive them in substandard forms. Malicious actors also create fake business listings or profiles with their contact details on Google Maps to divert inquiries to scammers. Unsolicited emails or messages claiming to be from romantic partners or companies offering Valentine’s Day deals often contain links or attachments that install malware or steal personal information. The CSA advised the public to be cautious of “too good to be true” deals and to use reputable online marketplaces or retailers. They also advised individuals to verify the contact details of businesses through official websites or reliable sources, be alert for fake online shops and hyped advertisements, and insist on payment only after delivery and inspection. The CSA established a 24-hour Cybersecurity or Cybercrime Incident Reporting Point of Contact for reporting cybercrimes and seeking guidance and assistance on online activities.

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