Tabu, Taapsee and Anushka in India list of most dangerous celebrities to search for online

Updated: 07 October, 2020 09:27 IST | A correspondent | Mumbai

In 2020, owing to the COVID-19 induced lockdown, Indians have been particularly active online, increasing their usage across many devices and scouring the internet for a wide variety of entertainment

Taapsee Pannu, Anushka Sharma
Taapsee Pannu, Anushka Sharma

Global football sensation and Portuguese player Cristiano Ronaldo tops McAfee’s India list of most dangerous celebrities to search for online. For the 14th year, McAfee researched which famous names generate the riskiest search results that could potentially trigger consumers to unknowingly install malware on their devices.

In 2019, Ronaldo was found to be on the 10th position. However, owing to his transfer to Juventus from Real Madrid for a reported £105M making headlines world over, he reached the no. 1 spot in 2020. With all eyes on him at the UEFA Champions league this year, he has been capturing attention from football enthusiasts worldwide. Ronaldo’s popularity has soared not only for his football skills but also for his lifestyle, brand endorsements, earnings and social media clout.

Surprisingly enough, fans are also constantly seeking news on his personal life, such as his children and partners. McAfee’s research shows that this highly searched-for soccer star is in fact the most dangerous celebrity to search for in 2020, as his name generates the most harmful links online.

Trailing Ronaldo is veteran actress Tabu on no. 2. She was recently in news for her roles in critically acclaimed movies like Andhadhun and A Suitable Boy. Following her is Taapsee Pannu at no. 3, best known for portraying strong female characters with movie choices like Pink and Thappad.

On no. 4 is leading Bollywood actresses Anushka Sharma and on no. 5 is Sonakshi Sinha. Also making to the top ten is millennial heartthrob and Indian singer Armaan Malik at no. 6, closely followed by the young and bubbly Sara Ali Khan at no. 7.

Rounding out the rest of the top ten are popular TV soap actress Divyanka Tripathi at no. 8, Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan at no. 9 and Bollywood’s beloved playback singer Arijit Singh at no 10.

"As consumers scout the web for free entertainment now more than ever, cybercriminals trail close behind, capitalising on this interest. Unsuspecting users often look for free and pirated content such as major sports events, movies, TV shows, along with images and leaked videos of their favourite celebs. Bad actors leverage consumers’ fascination with pop culture and drive unsuspecting fans to malicious websites that install malware on their devices, potentially putting personal information at risk,” said Venkat Krishnapur, vice president of engineering and managing director, McAfee India.

“When consumers compromise on security in favour of convenience and freebies, they put their digital lives at risk. It is vital that fans stay vigilant, avoid suspicious links that promise free content and think twice before clicking,” Krishnapur added.

In 2020, owing to the COVID-19 induced lockdown, Indians have been particularly active online, increasing their usage across many devices and scouring the internet for a wide variety of entertainment. From free movies and TV shows to the latest celebrity news and gossip, the consumers turned to digital content to entertain themselves. Hackers, too, honed-in on this trend following consumer behaviour to execute their scam strategies.

The top 10 celebrities from this year’s India study

1

Cristiano Ronaldo

2

Tabu

3

Taapsee Pannu

4

Anushka Sharma

5

Sonakshi Sinha

6

Armaan Malik

7

Sara Ali Khan

8

Divyanka Tripathi

9

Shah Rukh Khan

10

Arijit Singh

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First Published: 07 October, 2020 09:00 IST

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