McAfee adds to legal chorus: Bieber is dangerous

Add this to accusations of vandalism, impaired and dangerous driving, for Stratford, Ont.-born mega pop star Justin Bieber’s jacket: He’s the Canadian most likely to lead web surfers to a malicious site, according to IT security firm McAfee Inc. Not all of these accusations have been tested in court, but McAfee’s analysis shows that a Web search by Beliebers led to malicious sites 13 per cent of the time. The study was conducted using McAfee’s Site Advisor ratings system.

According to McAfee’s chief privacy officer Michelle Dennedy, celebrity names coupled with video are the most-searched term on the web.

Bieber surpasses former Most Dangerous Canadian Avril Lavigne, who slipped to fourth place, with 11 per cent of searches leading to malicious sites. Other dangerous Canadians included Deadmau5 (12 per cent) and actress Ellen Page (11.5 per cent), with actress Anna Paquin rounding out the top five at a hair under 11 per cent.

But as a species, Canadians don’t seem to be particularly dangerous in Web search terms (it’s that natural politeness I guess, though that doesn’t apply to some). Bieber was the only Canadian to crack McAfee’s top 50 worldwide dangerous celebrities. No. 1 on the list: late night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel.

New Jersey seems to produce a lot of dangerous celebrities; musicians Bruce Springsteen and Jon Bon Jovi, along with N.J.-native commedian Chelsea Handler, all cracked the top 10.

McAfee offers the following advice for avoiding computer damage from these dangerous celebrities:

* Don’t click on third-party links. If your Kimmel video comes from anywhere but ABC, be suspicious.

* Stick to official sites for breaking news.

* “Free downloads” are by far the most perilous Web content.

* Use a safe search tool.

You can find a more comprehensive list of dangerous celebrities on McAfee’s web site.


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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Dave Webb
Dave Webb
Dave Webb is a technology journalist with more than 15 years' experience. He has edited numerous technology publications including Network World Canada, ComputerWorld Canada, Computing Canada and eBusiness Journal. He now runs content development shop Dweeb Media.

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