Oct 16 2018

The Danger of Ruby Rose

Every year, McAfee produces an ominous sounding list: the most dangerous celebrities on the Internet. The list is an indication of which celebrity personas cyber criminals use as a point of interest to get you to click on an ad, link, or download an attachment.

What does it mean for you? Several things, depending on if you are worried about it from a corporate perspective, or a home use case.

In the office, this is a big reason why some companies have a strict ‘no personal e-mail’ policy. Part of it relates to wanting you to worry about only work, but make no mistake, those employers don’t want to run the risk of being exposed to exploits launched from an employee’s personal e-mails. When employers restrict that, they eliminate an attack vector – it’s one less thing to defend against, which is a good thing. Otherwise, employers can and do rely on things like e-mail spam filtering, along with deploying anti-virus and anti-malware applications to be able to protect, prevent and defend against employees clicking on the wrong links.

At home, many of the same protections are available. Mail platforms such as Gmail have spam filtering built-in. While it is not perfect, it generally does an effective job at catching the most obvious bad e-mails. Beyond built-in mail filtering, users are able to install a variety of malware and anti-virus packages, with prices ranging from free to paid subscriptions. Having these utilities installed, whether on a work or personal laptop, is a great line of defense against such attacks.

This is just the latest reminder that attackers are looking for any and every possible inroad into your computer and online activities. Whether you think you’ve just inherited millions, or you are dying to see the last scandalous celebrity pictures, it’s a good rule that clicking on that type of e-mail is going to give you a worse outcome than you expect. When in doubt, you are better off not clicking.