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Dangerous ladies! Cameron Diaz ( right), Julia Roberts ( top left) and Jessica Biel are the top targets of cybercriminals and searching these celebrities on the Web could open the door to malware, says a McAfee study
 
Cyber sirens! Net baddies exploit celebrity-craze: McAfee study

The McAfee Most Dangerous Celebrities study funded by security technology leader McAfee, has rated cinemactress Cameron Diaz as the  most dangerous celebrity to search for on the Web – followed by Julia Roberts and Jessica Biel. For the fourth year running, the study researches popular culture’s most famous people to reveal the riskiest celebrity athletes, musicians, politicians, comedians and Hollywood stars on the Web.

The good news is that politicians like Barack Obama and Sarah Palin are among the safest. Cybercriminals use the names of popular celebrities to lure people to sites that are actually laden with malicious software. Anyone looking for the latest videos or pictures could end up with a malware-ridden computer instead of just trendy content. Searching for the latest Cameron Diaz pictures and downloads yields a ten percent chance of landing on a website that’s tested positive for online threats, such as spyware, adware, spam, phishing, viruses and other malware

Tennis stars Maria Sharapova and Andy Roddick came in at (#13) and (#14) respectively 

 The top 10 celebrities from this year’s study with the highest percentages of risk are:

1.  Cameron Diaz – Searching for Diaz results in a one in ten chance of landing on a risky site. She has most recently been in the spotlight with blockbuster movies, “Knight and Day” and “Shrek Forever After.”   When “Cameron Diaz and screensavers” was searched, 19 percent of the sites were identified as containing malicious downloads

2. Julia Roberts – Academy Award-winning actress Julia Roberts is one of America’s sweethearts, and will soon be in the spotlight with her upcoming release of “Eat, Pray, Love.” The overall risk of searching for Roberts is nine percent, yet searching for “Julia Roberts and downloads” results in a 20 percent chance of downloading a photo, wallpaper or other file laden with malware

3. Jessica Biel – Last year’s Most Dangerous Celebrity fell two spots with searches resulting in fewer risky sites this year. Biel continues to be in the spotlight with her on-again, off-again relationship with Justin Timberlake, and appeared in “The A-Team” in June 2010.  While her overall search risk is nine percent, searching for “Jessica Biel and screensavers” results in a 17 percent chance of landing on a risky site.

4. Gisele Bündchen – The world’s highest-paid supermodel moved up two spots since last year. Searching for “Gisele Bündchen and screensavers” can prove risky, 15 percent of the search results for this beauty can put spyware, malware or viruses on your computer.

5. Brad Pitt – Pitt is often in the spotlight with news of his movies and his personal life. It’s no wonder why this leading man has been in the top ten for the past three years.  He moved up in rank five spots this year.  Downloading photos, screensavers, or other files of Brad can potentially put adware or spyware in your computer

6. Adriana Lima – Searching for downloads of this Brazilian beauty can direct users to red-ranked sites. Lima is best known for being a Victoria’s Secret Angel since 2000

7. Jennifer Love Hewitt, Nicole Kidman – Searching for these Hollywood starlets resulted in an equal number of risky download websites.

8. Tom Cruise – With recent buzz around his MTV Awards performance as well as his movie, “Knight and Day,” Cruise rises to the top ten.

9. Heidi Klum, Penelope Cruz – Both of these ladies are consistently in the spotlight, and share the #9 spot. Cybercriminals use their names to lure people to risky sites. Klum hosts “Project Runway” and Cruz has been in the spotlight recently for her role in the “Sex and the City 2” movie and is expected to be in the fourth film of the “Pirates of the Caribbean” series

10. Anna Paquin – This “True Blood” star is as dangerous on the Web as she is on the screen. Searching for screensavers of Paquin can lead you to downloads filled with malware.




McMcAfee SiteAdvisor technology protects users from malicious websites and browser exploits, and notifies users whether a site has been scanned by McAfee for potential vulnerabilities. SiteAdvisor technology tests and rates nearly every trafficked site on the Internet and uses red, yellow and green icons to indicate the website’s risk level.Afee SiteAdvisor software can be downloaded quickly and for free at www.mcafee.com/siteadvisor SiteAdvisor software works with Internet Explorer and Firefox. 


Aug 20 2010

 




    


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