Simply with a link the hackers they could attack users. They could use them to bait and get credentials, steal passwords, sneak malware… Keep in mind that cybercriminals are constantly perfecting their attacks and that means bypassing security tools and improving deception.
There are a number of common attacks that are based on the links. They can forge URLs in order to attack our systems or steal accounts. Let’s see what are the main strategies that can be followed to achieve this.
Undoubtedly a classic when it comes to talking about attacks through links is the Phishing. It basically consists of creating a web page that pretends to be legitimate, that pretends to be a site to log in or make a purchase.
What the attacker achieves with this is that the victim puts their data. You can log in, enter the password or make a payment. Now, that data will end up on a server controlled by the attackers.
Phishing attacks generally arrive through the email, but they can also arrive by SMS or even social networks. Sometimes we can receive them through an account of a contact that we trust but that has been previously attacked.
HTML file to redirect to another malicious site
In this case, the cybercriminal is going to attack a website, insert a html file, with the aim of redirecting to another malicious page. In this way the user, the victim ultimately, accesses a legitimate page but just a few seconds later is redirected to another that has nothing to do with it.
This does not mean that it will affect the main URL, but it could appear when clicking on a section of the web, a link that there is to enter any content on that site. Logically, that page can be created to sneak malware, serve as bait to steal passwords, etc.
This is another widely used method to spoof url and attack users. What they basically do is hide the real address and send a link to the shortened victim. This way you cannot see the full address.
For example, they could send us an email with a supposed link to download a file or to access a certain website. But of course, that link could contain strange characters or something that would make the victim suspicious and this is avoided by sending a shortened link.
Use similar domains
The use of domains That they look like the originals is another point to take into account. They usually change a letter, symbol, or even the extension. At first glance it might seem like a legitimate, original page, but in reality we are accessing a totally different website that could be designed to steal our data.
Another way to spoof the URL we visit is through the DNS hijacking. They could make that when entering a web page, in a legitimate domain, we are actually accessing a different one. The DNS are responsible for translating the information we put in and send us to the corresponding IP address.
In this case, the hacker’s mission is to put a word or phrase that nothing corresponds to the link to which they direct. If we pass the mouse over it we will see that this URL has nothing to do with what it shows us. They can catch unsuspecting users who click without looking closely at where they are entering.
We have seen how they could use a URL to attack us. Different methods that hackers use to carry out their strategies and steal personal information, passwords and infect computers. We are now going to give some tips to avoid this type of attack.
Common sense and observation
Undoubtedly a very important aspect is common sense. We always must avoid making mistakes that may weigh on our privacy and security. In the case of attacks using false URLs, we must always observe what we are visiting. You have to make sure that this link is legitimate, that it has not been modified and that it really shows us what we are waiting for.
Have security programs
Of course, another issue to keep in mind is to always use security programs. There are many tools that we have at our disposal, for all types of operating systems. They help us prevent the entry of malicious software and reduce the impact that attackers may have.
Have updated equipment
We must also have all the patches and updates there is for our teams. In many cases, hackers take advantage of existing vulnerabilities to sneak fake and dangerous links. Hence, it is important to update the systems properly.
One of the methods used by cyber criminals is the shortened links that hide fraudulent links. Luckily we can make use of different online tools that allow us to analyze a link before opening it. They show us the real address so we can see if it is a scam or really something that will not have any impact on our security.
Ultimately, these are some of the main issues to consider in relation to fake links and how hackers use them to attack. We must always keep our equipment protected, safe and with everything necessary to avoid problems.