Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Basic QR code safety

McAfee has issued some basic security advice regarding QR codes. It's a very short article with a minimal amount of marketing content.

It should no longer be a surprise that QR codes are potentially dangerous. They can be used to offend*, defraud or even compromise the security of your phone, PC or tablet.

I've published a few pieces on QR codes here.

McAfee makes the following sensible points:
  • Be suspicious of QR codes that offer no context explaining them. Malicious codes often appear with little or no text.
  • If you arrive on a website via a QR code, never provide your personal or log in information since it could be a phishing attempt.
  • Use a QR reader that offers you a preview of the URL that you have scanned so that you can see if it looks suspicious before you go there.
  • Use complete mobile device security software, like McAfee® Mobile Security, which includes anti-virus, anti-theft and web and app protection and can warn you of dangerous websites embedded in QR codes.
* Could a QR code offend someone? How about if you encoded a QR code for a shock site and stuck it on a billboard advertising something more attractive? When someone scans it in and they will (or should) be offended pretty fast!