The 2018 FIFA World Cup is well underway. If you’re in Russia to support your team then you need to take steps to ensure your phones, laptops remain and most importantly your data cyber secure.
Doing the basics can greatly reduce the threats. Make sure to avoid using the open Wi-Fi connections often found in public spaces and hotels. After all, you never know who could be watching after all.
As with any major sporting event, the number of phishing emails increases as hackers tempt sports fans with prizes that are too good to be true. A favourite scam is to offer tickets to the big games in exchange for your bank details or to use links infected with malware.
An email phishing scam currently doing the rounds offers fans the chance to get tickets, but results in the victim’s payment information being stolen and either sold on the Dark web or used for criminal activity.
To ensure you get genuine World Cup tickets you have to complete several authentication steps through official websites such as the FIFA website.
When travelling overseas you should think about what devices you actually need to take with you.
Do you really need to take a laptop or multiple phones? If you lose a device or it gets stolen what sort of information do you have stored on them? Ideally, you should turn on the ability to wipe your phone remotely should it become lost. Ideally, back up all your data and photos before you travel. Just to be on the safe side you could take a cheap pay as you go phone rather than your smart phone.
In early May it was revealed that some email correspondence between FIFA and the English Football Association was compromised by a Russian hacking group. Such instances reveal the threat faced by the teams themselves.
Espionage during such tournaments is not unheard of and the ability to find out about team tactics and/or injuries could prove invaluable to gain the upper hand and it happens more often than you’d think.
In 2016, the scouting director for the St Louis Cardinals baseball team in the USA was punished after he used a colleague’s password to gain access to the emails and scouting system of a rival team.
Other sports such as Formula One have proven to be vulnerable too with the most infamous case seeing McLaren being hit with a $100 million fine after it was found to be in possession of secret information from its rival Ferrari.
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