Trend Micro Study Reveals Criminal Abuses Of Twitter

July 31, 2019 - 03:38
Trend Micro Study Reveals Criminal Abuses Of Twitter

Social network used for scams and malice, as well as a threat intelligence source


HONG KONG, CHINA - Media OutReach - 31 July 2019 - Trend Micro Incorporated (TYO: 4704; TSE: 4704),a global leader in cybersecurity solutions, today announced a new studyrevealing how cybercriminals are abusing Twitter via tech support scams,command-and-control (C&C) operations and data exfiltration.


Trend Micro researchers analyzed a large volume of Twitterdata to identify relationships between various entities to spot anomalies anduncover key insights.


"Social media is an inescapable part of modern life, and ournew research shines an important light on how it's being used positively by thesecurity community, and abused by criminals," said Mark Nunnikhoven, vicepresident of cloud research for Trend Micro. "This research shows businesseshow the misuse of social networks can damage their brand, and it informsconsumers how they might be tricked into a scam from what is believed to be atrusted source. We hope by making these abuses known, both businesses andconsumers can be vigilant to not become victims of such attacks."


Criminals were found using fake Twitter accounts to spoofthose of legitimate vendors for credible tech support scams. Users call thefake phone number provided, believing they are speaking with the intendedcompany's help desk, which results in the caller either sharing credit cardinformation or installing malicious content on the their computer.


This is often part of a multi-platform strategy along withYouTube, Facebook, Telegram and other channels to improve SEO for fake techsupport websites linked to the Twitter accounts, boosting their searchrankings.


While criminals are using the social network for bad, threatresearchers can  leverage the power ofsocial media for good. Most notably, Twitter is used for monitoringvulnerability disclosures to inform patch prioritization, and scanning forindicators of compromise, threat detection rules, and other contextualinformation to boost threat intelligence.


Trend Micro recommends users confirm the validity of aTwitter account by checking the company's website directly, rather than throughthe account. It is also important for security teams to validate Twitter datawhen leveraging it for investigations or threat intelligence.


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About Trend Micro

TrendMicro Incorporated, a global leader in cybersecurity solutions, helps to makethe world safe for exchanging digital information. Our innovative solutions forconsumers, businesses, and governments provide layered security for data centers,cloud environments, networks, and endpoints. All our products work together toseamlessly share threat intelligence and provide a connected threat defensewith centralized visibility and control, enabling better, faster protection.With more than 6,000 employees in over 50 countries and the world's mostadvanced global threat intelligence, Trend Micro enables organizations tosecure their journey to the cloud. Formore information, visit