Instagram Story scam promises a free Apple Watch or iPhone X

by Lucia Danes - -

Online celebrity's hacked Instagram account is used to promote scam

Instagram Apple watch scam

Several days ago, Elton Castee, a famous YouTuber who is known for quite a few films as well as money raising for charity campaigns, was surprised after finding out that his Instagram account is hacked by some strangers. Thanks to his passionate followers who were in a hurry to report him about the jeopardized account – comments flooded his Instagram page right after users noticed that his last post is entirely out of character – Elton realized that he is involved into some serious scam.

The post that attracted the most of its followers consisted of a black background with the white text offering to obtain a free iPhone X or Apple Watch. Comparing to his previous entries, you could spot the massive difference as the author has never used blank posts as well as giveaways and similar contests. 

The main aim of the scam – a bunch of personal data

The last entry on Elton Castee's Instagram displayed a black background with the following message:

Wassup guys! I am giving away 100 free iPhone X’s and Apple watches on my IG Story! Claim them before it’s too late. Love you guys [heart]

As soon as users clicked on the picture, they were taken to an Instagram Story. Additionally, they were prompted to swipe up to claim the prize and were redirected to the following website: 107128[.]claimapplewatch[.]com. Such redirects is a clear indication showing that you are dealing with the scam, although people who are not familiar with such tricks might still fall for them.

After being redirected to the scam website, users were offered two sizes of watches – 388 mm and 42 mm. Additionally, they were asked to choose from other few types of items and then confirm the selection in the pop-up window. Not surprisingly, the next window consisted of multiple boxes asking for personal information, including:

  • Full name
  • Email
  • Full address

Officially, info was asked to “send the item chosen.” However, as soon as the questionnaire was complete, the user had another bunch of surveys to complete. Most surprisingly, they once again were asking to enter shipping details.

Personal data should not be exposed so easily

It is not the first time a social media account of a well-known individual is hacked. In 2011, Lady Gaga was surprised after finding out that she is involved to the Twitter scam offering free iPads.[1] In the meanwhile, several years earlier, Alicia Keys' Myspace page got injected with links that were used to infect machines with malware.[2]

Taking into account how important social media and Internet have become, such cyber threats as Facebook virus or Instagram virus[3] are definitely not going to leave us and users should be cautious not to fall for hackers' evil plots.

The consequences of data exposure can be pretty serious. By serious we mean identity theft[4] or the money loss. What is more, users can be enrolled in automatic subscriptions which can charge the credit card every month until the service is canceled manually.

Personal data breaches[5] and hacks are on the rise right now, so make sure you stay away from these too-good-to-be-true offers, as nobody is rushing to give away expensive items for free, especially for answering few silly questions. Survey scams and phishing emails are a simple yet effective way to acquire such data as credentials, which can be used for illegal purposes. 

Additionally, we highly recommend protecting your social media accounts by using a strong password and changing it frequently, as well as using two-factor authentication which can prevent account hacks in the future.

About the author

Lucia Danes
Lucia Danes - Virus researcher

Lucia is a News Editor for 2spyware. She has a long experience working in malware and technology fields.

Contact Lucia Danes
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