Cyberscamsters on prowl on Valentine Day

(image) New Delhi: Finding a date online for this Valentine`s Day or sending a gift to your partner through a website?

Well, it can be troublesome as cyberscammers would be preying to exploit gullible Internet users through e-cards, spams and viruses in this season of love, say experts.

From fake online dating profiles used to fool people, to phony eCards, be aware of cybercrooks who can pull on your heart strings to try and get what they want – your money and sensitive information, they say.

"Malware attacks that occur during special days or festivals employ social engineering tactics that play upon human weaknesses and influence people into falling for scams.

With Valentine`s Day nearing, cyber criminals scout for vulnerable hearts to trap by using fake online dating profiles or phony e-Cards that link to malware," says Vinoo Thomas, Technical Product Manager, McAfee Labs.

Spam and phishing attacks usually increase during Valentine`s Day, as a lot of people send e-cards, and shop online. Cyber criminals take advantage of this increased online traffic by sending spams, free holiday offers and invites to parties.

"The surprise e-card from an anonymous sender could give you a lot of heartache as it may be having a hard drive hack that can steal your identity. And that online flower purchase from an unprotected website can cause problems through credit card theft," says Pavan Duggal, a cyberlaws expert.

According to a recent report by online market research company Juxtconsult, there are around 49 million internet users in India out of which 25 million browse the internet every day.

"An anonymous email may ask about your financial details – usually your credit card number. Needless to say, the information you provide will end up with a scammer who can empty your credit card or bank account in just about no time," says Duggal.