Coinbase with interesting ads with …

A popular cryptocurrency exchange ran a “very exciting” commercial during the US Super Bowl. It was a static QR code that was scanned (according to their data) by more than 20 million people.

The recent “explosion” of cryptocurrencies and NFTs has led to a flurry of distortions of reality that mirror cybersecurity advice. This was not more evident in the cryptocurrency-related ads for the 2022 Super Bowl, particularly in the enigmatic QR code ad.

In an ad broadcast on US TV, Coinbase used a QR code that bounces across the screen and changes colors when it hits an edge. Much like DVD screensavers have been made in the past decade. The logo of said company quickly appears at the end of the one-minute video.

The ad used a similar tactic popular with scammers: a confusing link. Scammers targeting a larger audience in this way hope that curious people will click on the link and understand the vague message. (Tip: Do not scan unknown QR codes).

Here, too, the purpose was the same – the company wanted people to scan the code and find out the big secret. Spoiler: It’s a promotion where new users who sign up on Coinbase receive $15 in bitcoins, while existing users get a “chance to win $3 million in prizes.”

A harmless tactic that raises a series of questions

This is (otherwise) a fairly harmless tactic, although the question in the background is what data Coinbase may have collected from millions of curious visitors.

For example, the nonprofit National Cyber ​​Security Alliance warned that scammer “entrepreneurs” could easily create a similar video with a different QR code that leads to a phishing site. Just looking at the QR code couldn’t tell if this was what you were expecting. To find out what the code brings, it is necessary to scan it.

In this scenario, the scammer could provide the site with a phishing scam to imitate a Coinbase page and encourage visitors to provide their personal information — or worse, financial information.

“A lot of people don’t realize that [QR] “The codes have been forged by cybercriminals and implicated in malware or malicious URLs in hopes of opening the door to access sensitive data,” said Lisa Blagamer, interim executive director of the National Cyber ​​Security Alliance.

“Despite all the talk about the negative effects of the Coinbase announcement from an electronic point of view, the announcement sparked something good, sparking a conversation about QR codes and their pros and cons.”

The problem with QR codes is that they rely on a kind of blind trust, which has decreased significantly in recent times. Changes made to the popular Android operating system make it difficult to force the installation of QR code-related malicious apps.

Even the default “performance” of most smartphones can act as a first line of defence. On Android and iOS, you can scan a QR code by opening the Camera app and then pointing at the code. The app then displays the associated URL, which then needs to be clicked to open the site associated with the QR code. This means that people at least have the option not to click on the link if the URL looks suspicious.

Bitcoin Trader

Bitcoin Trader

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *