The wait is finally over and World Cup 2022 should start in Qatar this week. However, security experts are warning football and soccer fans of a number of online scams, fake websites and other threats they should watch out for during the tournament which runs from November 20 to November 18. december.

Although cybercriminals often clean during black friday and the holiday shopping season, events like the World Cup and the Olympics give them even more time to create elaborate scams. From phishing pages posing as legitimate websites to fake advertisements and counterfeit cryptocurrencies, they are as ready to scam sports fans as Qatar will host the World Cup this year.

Security researchers from Kaspersky and ESET have scoured the web for World Cup 2022 scams. Below are some of the most popular along with tips on how you can avoid falling victim to them, but keep in mind. Mind that there might be other scams out there that can infect your devices with malware, steal your passwords to take control of your online accounts, and even drain your bank account or crypto wallet.

Ticketing scams

Fake 2022 World Cup ticket offer

(Image credit: Kaspersky)

Tickets for a 2022 World Cup match can be had for as low as $11 for group matches or up to $1,600 for the final, but you’ll also need to travel to Qatar if you want to watch a match. match in person. Even though the tournament will take place this month, cybercriminals have already started running World Cup ticketing scams online in June, according to a blog post (opens in a new tab) by IRONSCALES. In this case, the scammers tried to sell fake tickets via email, but these messages were actually just phishing attempts.

At the same time, Reddit users reported last month (opens in a new tab) that people online were trying to sell them physical tickets to games. However, the 2022 World Cup only uses digital tickets which can be purchased or resold through FIFA’s online platform. So if someone is trying to sell you World Cup tickets online or in person, they are probably fake.

Lottery scams

Cybercriminals are also using lottery scams to try to trick football fans according to a blog post (opens in a new tab) from ESET. While the messages used in these scams aim to convince unsuspecting fans that they have won a cash prize, ticket or hospitality package to watch the World Cup in person, they are actually stealing your personal data, your money or trick you into installing malware on your devices.

These lottery scams may also require you to transfer money in order to claim your winnings. However, instead of a cash prize, you can actually have your stolen identity using the information you provided.

Fake gifts and merchandise

Giveaways often go hand in hand with big events like the World Cup. According to a blog post (opens in a new tab) from Kaspersky, its researchers found phishing pages offering the possibility of winning two tickets for the tournament. Similar to lottery scams, the “lucky” winner will often have to pay delivery charges for tickets that are pocketed by cybercriminals.

Fake FIFA items like t-shirts, phone cases with popular players and even signed balls are another lure that cyber criminals use to scam football fans ahead of the 2022 World Cup. In this case, they get your personal information like your address as well as any transferred money. when you get nothing in return.

Crypto and NFT scams

Best Cryptocurrency Listed - Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Dogecoin, Binance

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Cryptocurrency scams are nothing new and Kaspersky researchers observed many of them ahead of this year’s World Cup. While some offer fans the chance to bet on a match and win cryptocurrency, others give them a chance to win a game. NFT or non-fungible token. The cybercriminals behind these scams ask potential victims to enter their crypto wallet credentials in order to gain access to all their funds and wallet data.

Another cryptocurrency scam related to the 2022 World Cup saw the creation of a new token called FIFA Inu. However, after its launch, its price rose and then suddenly dropped. Still, its creators have denied any claims that FIFA Inu is actually a scam.

Theft scams

In order to see a 2022 World Cup game in person, football fans will need to travel to Qatar, which is why cybercriminals have created a number of phishing pages that mimic airlines. After analyzing these pages, Kaspersky researchers discovered that travelers could only choose Qatar from the list of destinations. These theft scams collect not only the victim’s credit card data but also their passport information.

How to protect yourself from World Cup 2022 scams

fish hook on a keyboard

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

To avoid falling victim to these and other World Cup 2022 scams, you should remain vigilant when checking your inbox and any messages you may receive online about the tournament. This means carefully reviewing emails and messages for spelling, grammar and punctuation errors, as these can often be a red flag. However, you should also hover over all links to examine where they lead before clicking them, and Kaspersky recommends not clicking on links in suspicious emails. Instead, you must open a new tab or window and enter the URL manually.

You should also carefully consider the type of information that World Cup 2022 emails or even websites request. Legitimate businesses don’t ask you to enter personal or financial information, and any unsolicited message asking you to “verify your account details” or “update your account information” should be treated with extreme caution.

To protect your devices and data, you should use one of the best antivirus software solutions and if you are scammed in the 2022 World Cup, the better protection against identity theft can help you deal with fraud and recover your identity if it’s stolen.

Even if you are not planning to visit Qatar, you should also be careful when streaming World Cup matches online. Fake streaming sites are often used to spread malware and other viruses, which is why you should head straight to our 2022 World Cup Live Stream Hub if you want to watch this year’s matches online.