In context: Whenever a highly-anticipated show or movie releases or even nears a release, the pirates come out in force. Thousands of people begin looking for ways to watch the latest content online for free, and shady individuals are always quick to capitalize on the trend. We saw that last year when we reported that 17 percent of the Internet's malware-infested show downloads related to Game of Thrones.
The show was incredibly popular, and scammers took the opportunity to spread viruses and other dangerous software alongside fake or even real video files.
Now, it seems, scammers are utilizing these tactics again. Following the launch of Disney's Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker film, it seems quite a few internet users have fallen victim to "Star Wars-themed malware attacks." Kaspersky Lab has reportedly cataloged a whopping 285,103 of these attacks in 2019.
That's a startling number by itself, but more recently, the company reportedly discovered 65 malware "campaigns" across "more than 30" sites and social media accounts. All of these campaigns were designed to target individuals looking to download the latest Star Wars film for free. For more tech-savvy users, most of these campaigns are obviously suspicious, and quite simple to avoid.
However, for those with less experience on the web, it can be easy to take these too-good-to-be-true offers at face value. Many of us probably know a cousin, aunt, uncle, or grandparent that always seems to fall victim to these sorts of traps.
The number of false Star Wars download campaigns is probably only going to increase over the coming weeks, so we advise our readers to stay vigilant and simply see the film in theaters if they possess the means to do so. Alternatively, wait for it to hit official streaming or download platforms, like Amazon, Disney+, or others.