McAfee Report: Free Online Entertainment Search ‘Perfect Storm’ for Cybercrime

The company released a top 10 list of most targeted TV shows and movies

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Trying to download your favorite TV show or movie for free? This could put you at significant risk of cyberattacks, according to a report released Tuesday by virus protection company McAfee.

With online video consumption increasing, due largely to the COVID-19 pandemic stay-at-home orders, McAfee researched the risks US consumers could potentially be exposed to when browsing the web for popular online entertainment.

As such, the company came up with a Top 10 list of the most targeted titles in online entertainment.

From an analysis of more than one hundred most talked about entertainment titles available across today’s leading streaming providers, McAFee found that TV show Brooklyn Nine-Nine and the film Warrior were the most targeted entertainment titles.

"With consumers increasingly going online to stay entertained during lockdowns it has created the perfect storm for web crime,” says Baker Nanduru, VP of Consumer Endpoint Segment at McAfee. “History has proven that cyber criminals follow consumer trends and behaviors to educate their scam strategies. It’s important that consumers stay alert while online and avoid malicious websites that may install malware or steal personal information and passwords.”

Also in the top 10 list of TV shows included Elite, Harlots, Letterkenny, Poldark Lost, You, Gentefied, PEN15, and Skins, respectively and in the movie category Zombieland, The Incredibles, Bad Boys, Aladdin (2019), The Lion King (1994), Swingers, Frozen 2 and The Invitation.

The report also found that the most targeted movie genre were children's films.

"Movies account for 4 of the top 10 movies McAfee identified as a high risk of being targeted by cyber-criminal activity. With cyber criminals regularly tracking changes in social trends like school closures, parents need to be extra vigilant when it comes to searching online for content for their children to watch," the company wrote in a press release.

McAfee also added some tips to stay safe online including cautioning viewers what links they click on, refrain from using illegal streaming sites, use parental control software and find a cybersecurity solution.

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