“Cybercriminals are tampering with QR codes to redirect victims to malicious sites that steal login and financial information,” the federal law enforcement agency said.
The FBI said crooks are switching legitimate QR codes used by businesses for payment purposes to redirect potential victims to malicious websites designed to steal their personal and financial information, install malware on their devices, or divert their payments to accounts under their control.
“While QR codes are not malicious in nature, it is important to practice caution when entering financial information as well as providing payment through a site navigated to through a QR code,” the FBI added.
The FBI advised Americans to pay attention to the URL they’re sent after scanning QR codes, always be cautious when entering their data after scanning a QR code, and make sure that physical QR codes haven’t been covered with malicious ones.
You should also avoid installing apps via QR codes or installing QR code scanners.
The FBI issued another PSA focused on QR code risks in November, alerting people that victims of various fraud schemes are increasingly asked by criminals to use QR codes and cryptocurrency ATMs to hinder efforts to recover their financial losses.