Comedian Kapil Sharma, who has had the nation in splits with his jokes, has topped this year’s list of “most sensational celebrity” online with cyber crooks using his name to lure netizens to malicious websites, security software maker McAfee today said. Sharma, who is the first Indian comedian to top McAfee’s annual list, beat actors Salman Khan (No 2) and Aamir Khan (No 3) to top the tally. McAfee said cybercriminals continue to use the fascination of consumers with celebrity culture to drive unsuspecting users to potentially malicious websites. These harmful websites are used by cybercrooks to install malware, steal personal information and even passwords of unsuspecting netizens.
McAfee’s report, which is in its 11th edition, found searching for “Kapil Sharma” resulting in a 9.58 per cent chance of landing on a malicious website. Searching for “Salman Khan” and “Aamir Khan” resulted in a 9.03 per cent and 8.89 per cent chance, respectively of landing on a malicious website. Others in the tally include names like Priyanka Chopra, Anushka Sharma, Sunny Leone, Kangana Ranaut, Ranveer Singh, Shahid Kapoor and Tiger Shroff. “With today’s digital explosion, the gap between celebrities and their fans has diminished. There is a looming interest among Indians to know more about their favourite icons, for which there is a deluge of fresh and readily consumable content made available,” McAfee Head of R&D Operations Venkat Krishnapur said.
Cybercriminals are leveraging this interest and preying on consumer vulnerabilities when they compromise on security in favour of convenience, he added. Krishnapur cautioned that users should think before clicking and adopt the right security solutions to stay safe online.