According to the McAfee Study published by Intel Security, a trio of country stars are among the Top 100 Most Dangerous Celebrities to search for online: Jason Aldean (#16), Luke Bryan (#39) and Blake Shelton (#66).
Now in its 10th year, the research uncovers which celebrities generate the most dangerous search results that could expose fans to viruses and malware while searching for the latest information on today’s pop culture icons. Intel’s study was conducted using its own site ratings to determine the number of risky sites generated by searches on Google, Bing and Yahoo.
“Consumers today remain fascinated with celebrity culture and go online to find the latest pop culture news,” said Gary Davis, chief consumer security evangelist at Intel Security. “With this craving for real-time information, many search and click without considering potential security risks. Cybercriminals know this and take advantage of this behavior by attempting to lead them to unsafe sites loaded with malware.”
This year’s Top 10 list included Amy Schumer (#1), Justin Bieber (#2), Carson Daly (#3), Will Smith (#4), Rihanna (#5), Miley Cyrus (#6), Chis Hardwick (#7), Daniel Tosh (#8), Selena Gomez (#9) and Kesha (#10).
In addition to recommending anti-virus software, Intel, whose products include McAfee software, urges consumers to take precautions when surfing the web.
Think before you click. Are you looking for the latest episode of Amy Schumer’s TV show, Inside Amy Schumer? Don’t click on that third-party link. Instead, get your content directly from the original source at comedycentral.com to ensure you aren’t clicking on anything that could be malicious.
Use caution when searching for “torrent.” This term is by far the riskiest search term. Cybercriminals can use torrents to embed malware within authentic files making it difficult to determine if a file is safe. It’s best to avoid using torrents especially when there are so many legitimate streaming options available.
Keep your personal information personal. Cybercriminals are always looking for ways to steal your personal information. If you receive a request to enter information like your credit card, email, home address or social media login don’t give it out thoughtlessly. Do your research and ensure it’s not a phishing or scam attempt that could lead to identity theft.
photos of Jason Aldean by James Minchin/The Greenroom PR; Luke Bryan courtesy UMG; Blake Shelton by Brian Bowen/NBC