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Over 1,000 phony websites found: expert

  • May 16, 2020
  • , Jiji Press , 6:20 p.m.
  • English Press

Tokyo, May 16 (Jiji Press)–At least over 1,000 phony websites for institutions and companies have been found to have been created, a Japanese online security expert said Saturday.

 

Fake sites include those for Japanese government agencies, news outlets and electronics makers as well as major foreign companies.

 

They were apparently created between February and May, according to Kenzo Masamoto, director of the Security Research Center at Macnica Networks Corp., an information security company based in Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture, near Tokyo.

 

These sites have domains ending with .ga, .gq, .cf, .tk, or .ml that have been acquired for free through a company based in the Netherlands.

 

These domains are for countries such as Gabon and Equatorial Guinea. The sites are hosted on servers of a U.S. company, according to Masamoto.

 

Fake sites have content the same as genuine sites and also reflect updates.

 

There have been no reports of damage from phony sites, such as compromises of personal information and computer virus attacks.

 

Phony sites are believed to have been created intentionally, but the purpose is still unclear.

 

Japanese government agencies and others have asked the server operator to delete fake sites since it is possible to change content and distribute computer viruses via them.

 

“The creator apparently aimed to make platforms for scam sites to defraud money and personal information,” Masamoto said, adding that they may have been created for sale to crime groups.

 

“It’s dangerous to access them,” Masamoto said.

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