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Hackers Leverage GDPR to Target Airbnb Customers

Fraudsters are taking advantage of new EU privacy laws to demand personal information from Airbnb users.

Updated 5/7/2018 with Airbnb's statement.

A new phishing scam capitalizes on the upcoming General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) to trick Airbnb customers into sharing personal and financial data, Redscan reports. The scale of the campaign is unknown, though it likely targets email addresses taken from the open Web.

Targets receive an email designed to appear as though it's from Airbnb, addressing them as a host of the service. The message says hosts can't accept new bookings or contact potential gusts until they accept a new privacy policy. If they click the malicious link, targets are prompted to enter personal information including payment card details and account data. Everything they enter goes to the attackers.

It's worth noting Airbnb is sending emails to alert users about GDPR-related changes; however, the legitimate notifications include more detail and none ask for users' credentials.

The European Union's new privacy laws, designed to grant people more control over the information they share online, goes into effect on May 25. In the weeks leading up to its rollout, companies are sending messages to gain users' consent for staying on their mailing lists -- and hackers are taking advantage of the trend.

Airbnb issued this statement:

"These emails are a brazen attempt at using our trusted brand to try and steal users' details and have nothing to do with Airbnb. We'd encourage anyone who has received a suspicious looking email to report it to our Trust and Safety team at [email protected], who will fully investigate. We provide useful information on how to spot a fake email on our help center and work closely with external partners to report and help remove fake Airbnb websites."

 

Read more details about this campaign here.

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