Hype surrounding smartwatch exploited by cynical scammers.
Hackers have jumped on the unveiling of the Apple Watch as a chance to phish for data through social networks, according to the security vendor Malwarebytes.
Victims are said to be lured into the scam through the promise of a free Apple Watch, but instead are redirected onto a labyrinthine series of links, in what appears to be a phishing exercise to collect people’s details.
"[The offer] may sound promising, but what follows is a semi-exhausting jaunt around a couple of different websites with instructions to follow along the way," said Christopher Boyd, malware intelligence analyst at Malwarebytes.
He added that after following several links to shoddy looking websites the user will end up with "a wall of text on a Facebook page with some very specific hoops to jump through in order to obtain the watch."
The victim is then instructed to enter their name and Facebook handle to a website, and invite all their friends onto the scheme to get a watch, with 100 friends equating to the Apple Watch (which in fact is the middle model), 250 equating to the Watch Sport (the most basic) and 500 equating to the Apple Watch Edition, worth a minimum of £8,000.
After completing the task the scammers say they will send a direct message within three days with a confirmation link.
"The creation date for the website is listed as March 9th, and the Whois details are hidden behind a Whoisguard so there’s no way to know who you’re sending your information to," Boyd said.
"I love a good watch as much as the next person, but this seems like a long shot in terms of ‘winning’ the incredibly expensive watch of your dreams."