UAE warns against falling victim to fake RTA and Global Village Websites
Users looking to recharge their Nol cards in Dubai are urged to exercise caution as deceptive websites imitating the official RTA platform have emerged, aiming to steal money from unsuspecting victims.
An investigation reveals that fake sites not only target RTA but also replicate Global Village and the Museum of the Future websites to sell fraudulent tickets.
A Dubai resident, Mohammad Salman, fell victim to a deceptive site while attempting to recharge his Nol card. Despite the site's striking resemblance to RTA's official platform, Salman lost Dh1,051 instead of the intended Dh30. The investigation uncovered that the payment was directed to a company called Mono Direct FJ 1 in Kyiv, Ukraine, raising concerns about a widespread scam.
Ticket Sales Scam:
The investigation further exposed scams involving fake ticket sales for Global Village and the Museum of the Future. Tourists reported significant financial losses, with a Museum of the Future ticket purchased on a suspicious site marked as 'Dangerous' by Google.
Expert Recommendations for User Security:
Obaidullah Kazmi, founder and CTO of cybersecurity firm CREDO, emphasizes the growing threat of fake sites and advises users to exercise caution. He recommends authenticating websites before providing personal or financial details, checking for discrepancies in URLs, identifying poor grammar, and ensuring secure connections. Kazmi also highlights the responsibility of organizations to safeguard their brand and customer base through proactive measures, including the swift removal of counterfeit sites.
UAE Cybersecurity Challenges:
The UAE is facing a surge in cyber attacks, defending against 71 million incidents in the first three quarters of 2023. Dr. Mohammed Al Kuwaiti, head of the country's Cybersecurity Council, acknowledges the increasing challenges. Recently, the Smishing Triad attempted to steal personal and financial information through a text-based phishing campaign, prompting authorities to caution residents against responding to fraudulent calls or sharing one-time passwords (OTPs).
The prevalence of deceptive websites mimicking reputable platforms poses a significant threat to users in the UAE. As cyber attacks continue to rise, individuals and organizations are urged to remain vigilant, authenticate online platforms, and take proactive measures to ensure the security of personal and financial information. Authorities reinforce the importance of caution in responding to unsolicited calls or requests for sensitive data.