Network of 11,000 fake domains targets Europe with fake investment schemes

Recently researchers discovered a gigantic network of more than 11,000 domains involved in fake investment scheme promotions. This network used to promote many fake investment schemes to users in Europe. 

The platforms were seen containing enriched and false celebrity endorsements. The culprits used this to justify their legitimacy and consequently lure in victims. 

The operation’s goal is to trick users into getting involved in a high-return investment opportunity. Additionally the operators try to convince them to deposit a minimum amount of 250 EUR ($255) to sign up for the fake services. 

Researchers at the Group-IB, a cybersecurity company discovered this operation. They succeeded in mapping a large network that included phishing sites, content hosts and redirections. Group-IB asserted that more than 5,000 of the identified malicious domains are still active and running. 

The countries that the operation targeted so far comprises of the UK, Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, Portugal, Poland, Norway, Sweden and the Czech Republic. 

The fraudsters promotes their campaigns in various social media platforms as traps for targets. Victims who ends up clicking on the ads to learn more are redirected to pages that showcases alleged success stories. 

After that, the fraudsters requests contact details and is followed by a “customer agent” call. Eventually the victim is convinced to execute the deposit and the details received on the fake site are stored for future campaigns or resold to the dark web.