As Americans rush to contribute money to help victims of the Boston Marathon bombing, they should be watchful for scammers trying to cash in on the tragedy.
According to CNN, almost immediately upon word of the bombing hitting the news, new domain names — most of them centered on charities about the bombing — were registered.
Experts say that many of these domains will be run by people hoping to take advantage of the tragedy. By setting up phony websites accepting donations, these people line their own pockets using other people’s generosity. The websites can accept donations that will never be delivered, harvest credit card numbers and even infect the donor’s computer with dangerous software.
“Social media, in particular, makes it very easy to reach a lot of people quickly, when emotions are running high and people feel the need to take action, any action, to help,” Art Taylor, an executive with the Better Business Bureau said. A fake Twitter account was already set up and received more than 50,000 retweets before it was shut down.
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