Scammers Seek to Cash in on Christchurch Massacre
According to New Zealand’s cyber security organization, scammers are attempting to capitalize on the Christchurch Massacre shootings by tricking donors into giving money by sending phishing emails that contain links to fake bank accounts.
An outpouring of sadness and gifts totaling well over NZ$7 million (US$5 million) have been made in response to the accused white supremacist attack on two mosques that claimed the lives of 50 worshipers.
But CERT NZ, a government agency that responds to cyber security incidents, said emails with links to fake banking logins or fraudulent accounts were being sent out requesting money following the tragedy.
Westpac New Zealand bank warned separately in a statement that scammers were sending emails under its brand to swindle money out of people.
The warning was posted on Facebook, where the scam drew a furious reaction from users.
“Disgusting these low lives are trying to scam money out of people when they’re most vulnerable” wrote one.
“What a shameless act,” wrote another.
Some NZ$5.8 million has been donated via online fundraising platform givealittle, and a second — launchgood — has received more than NZ$2 million.
Forty pages have so far been set up on give alittle to bring in donations to help those affected by the mass shooting, Robyn Lentell of the Spark Foundation that runs the platform was quoted as saying by the New Zealand Herald newspaper.
New donation pages are “popping up every hour”, she said, adding each was “extensively” checked and had warning signs posted if they had not yet been moderated.
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