Known for her outspoken ways, American comedian and actress Amy Schumer is the most dangerous celebrity on the internet, Intel security announced on Tuesday (27 September). Knocking Dutch electronic dance music artist DJ Armin van Buuren off of the list, Schumer has topped McAfee's annual Most Dangerous Celebrities list study.
Covering a wide range of well-known figures including actors, musicians, TV hosts, comedians and athletes among others, the research determines which celebrities churn out the most dangerous search results that could potentially expose readers to viruses and malware looking to read up on their favourite icons.
According to the firm, a normal search for the 'Inside Amy Schumer' star comes with a 16% chance of connecting to a virus or malware-laden website. A search for 'Amy Schumer Torrent,' on the other hand, carries a 33% chance of connecting to a malicious website highlighting the growing trend of cord-cutting users moving away from cable TV towards streaming videos, TV shows and movies online.
"Savvy cybercriminals continue to leverage consumers' ongoing fascination with celebrity news - such as award and TV shows as well as movie premieres, album releases, celebrity breakups and more - to entice unsuspecting fans to visit sites loaded with malware that can steal passwords and personal information," Intel notes. "Consumers are now, more than ever, streaming videos, TV shows and movies online. As file sharing and torrent use continues to grow in popularity, it's no surprise that TV and movies are a target for cybercriminals seeking to create malicious files."
After the 'Trainwreck' actress, Justin Bieber came in second with 15%, followed by 'Today' show anchor and 'The Voice' host Carson Daly. Successful rapper turned Hollywood star Will Smith came in at number 3 followed by popular musicians Rihanna, Miley Cyrus and 'Funcomfortable' comedian Chris Hardwick.
Here are the top 10 celebrities with the highest risk percentages:
"Consumers today remain fascinated with celebrity culture and go online to find the latest pop culture news," Gary Davis, chief consumer security evangelist at Intel Security, said in a statement.
"With this craving for real-time information, many search and click without considering potential security risks. Cybercriminals know this and take advantage of this behavior by attempting to lead them to unsafe sites loaded with malware. As a result, consumers need to understand what precautions to take to enable safe online experiences."
Intel's study was conducted using its own site ratings to determine the number of risky sites generated by searches on Google, Bing and Yahoo.