The NCSC has revealed how it is working against scammers using celebrities to trick people into sending money with bogus investment opportunities.

These scams come in the form of fake news articles that use the branding of real news outlets to appear legitimate. They promote get-rich-quick schemes with fake endorsements from famous faces such as Sir Richard Branson, Ed Sheeran and Martin Lewis.

Through the Active Cyber Defence programme, the NCSC is taking unprecedented action against these investment scams. In just four months, more than 300,000 scam URLS have been brought down.

Some of the scams were detected because of reports received via the Suspicious Email Reporting Service. It is important to note that paid-for digital advertisements are driving traffic to these scams as well as emails.

Should you see these scams online, there are ways to report them.

  • Any suspected scam emails can be forwarded to the NCSC ( Suspicious emails are investigated and malicious content will be taken down.
  • Suspected scam adverts can be reported to the Advertising Standards Authority.

The NCSC has published guidance on dealing with suspicious emails, phone calls and text messages as well as what to do even if you have fallen victim to a scam.

Study highlights cyber security concerns for teachers

A study conducted by ESET in partnership with Internet Matters has revealed that 51% of teachers feel that their school has not done enough to tackle cyber security issues.

Since COVID-19 lockdown measures were implemented in March, many schools have turned to online facilities to continue teaching students. This has meant that staying secure online has become even more important for the education sector. The NCSC has previously published practical cyber security tips for schools which can help schools tackle cyber security issues. They may also find the Small Business or Small Charities guidance useful.

However, in the survey of 1,000 teachers, just 49% felt that their school had “done enough” to avoid problems. More than a third (36%) said they had received no cyber security information from schools in the past year, while just 20% have received training after lockdown began.

As young people spend more time online and with technology for educational purposes, it is crucial that teachers can talk to students about ways to stay secure online and manage their digital footprint.

US exposes Russian intelligence hacking tool

An advisory issued by the US National Security Agency and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has exposed a sophisticated Russian hacking tool.

Both agencies have said that the GRU has been using a previously undisclosed malware titled “Drovorub” which could access Linux-based computers.

The advisory also highlights the accused unit – the 85th Main Special Service Center or “GTsSS” – whose activity has previously been identified by the private sector as Fancy Bear, Strontium or APT28.

The advisory is the latest call-out by the US government aimed at Russian hacking operations.