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Report Sheds Light On The Alarming State Of Domains That Are Impersonating Established Brands In Order To Prey On Consumers

A research, conducted by a cybersecurity firm, shows that its clientele is plagued by over 1,100 impersonating domains per year.

First, let’s establish the importance of a domain. Online presence. A domain is nearly synonymous with any brand or corporation’s online image. It dictates the brand’s digital presence, their interaction with customers, their image to the world, and is a conduit for new customers as well. Almost any individual looking to hire a brand for their services will go online to look up their website. It’s why online marketing is such a big market, and its why so much money is spent on ensuring that websites look nothing short of pristine. Such is their online presence, that its exactly what impersonators tend to prey on the most when setting up fake domains.

What is the purpose of a fake domain? Typically, they serve to harvest personal information from unsuspecting individuals, that can then be used to the individual’s further detriment. Impersonators can set up fake domains for a bank. The unsuspecting individual enters their credit card details. And suddenly, they’ve got more trouble than they could possibly ever handle. Social security numbers, addresses, any sort of private information can be harvested, depending on the domain being imitated. In fact, in today’s technologically advanced world, it isn’t even that difficult to do so. Impersonating kits are regularly sold on the seedier parts of the internet, and can seriously harm tens of thousands of people.

The afore-mentioned research was conducted by Cyber Shadows, a cybersecurity software developer that focuses on ensuring that their clientele’s online assets are constantly secure and unexposed. The research in question also comes via collecting data from said clientele, and trying to assess just how far domain impersonation goes. The answer? Very, very far. As mentioned before, from the 90 clients that Cyber Shadows delved into, over 1,100 impersonating domains are being developed per year. At this point, basic probability dictates that at least a fourth or so of these ventures have been successful.

According to Cyber Shadows, the most vulnerable market is the world of finance. With cryptocurrency becoming increasingly popular, it’s very easy to set up fake wallet domains where individuals can send in their money and receive both literally and virtually nothing in response. Popular companies such as PayPal are also impersonated regularly, robbing people of their hard-earned money through incredibly illicit means.


As the world shifts more and more towards developing an online presence, so too does crime. While people are becoming more and more aware of how the online world works, there will always be individuals who don’t catch on fast enough, through no fault of their own. And fake domains will always be there to prey on them.

Read next: War Against Ransomware Continues With New Website Aiming to Shed More Light on the Matter

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