Grindr users are being targeted by cyber-scammers pretending to be victims of homophobic attacks
A cybersecurity firm has warned Irish Grindr users that scammers are targeting LGBT+ people on the app by pretending they have been victims of homophobic attacks.
ESET Ireland said that the new scam gets money from victims by acquiring their credit or debit card details.
It begins when Grindr users receive a message from an “attractive looking” person looking to hook up, but once contact has been established the scammer asks if the user has something call an “LGID”.
The scammer pretends to have recently been a victim of a homophobic attack, even attaching pictures of their supposed injuries, and says that “LGID” is a form of ID that will screen the Grindr user to make sure they don’t have a criminal record.
The scammer will send a link to a website where they can register for the screening, which requires a “a €2 payment for processing the ID”.
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The website states that 50 per cent of all payments will be donated to Harassment Victims Community Foundation (HVCF), an organisation which does not exist.
The website claims to be “an unprecedented public safety resource that provides the public with access to sex offender’s data nationwide.
“A partnership between North America, South America, Asia, Australia, Africa, and, Europe Department of Justice and state, territorial, and tribal governments, working together for the safety of everyone.”
Once the victim has entered their card information to pay the fee, €50 is immediately charged to their account. ESET warned that there could be “possible additional abuses of the card and the person’s private details for blackmail at a later date”.
The cyber security firm “advises extra caution when contacts on social media suggest following links that require filling out personal and payment details”.
In 2015, scammers on Grindr used bots masquerading as men to get personal information from users and install viruses on their computers.
PinkNews has contacted Grindr for comment.