• 13 February 2019
  • 2 min read

TSC featured on ITV’s Tonight show

In the run-up to last Christmas, The Security Company (TSC) featured in an episode of ITV’s Tonight show to help promote safe online shopping. The...

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ITV Tonight Show Christmas Cons revealed

In the run-up to last Christmas, The Security Company (TSC) featured in an episode of ITV’s Tonight show to help promote safe online shopping.

The episode, titled Christmas Buyers Beware was presented by Adam Shaw and focussed on the risks of online shopping, the increase in fraud at that time of year, and how to keep your money and information safe.

The TSC team attempted to scam six unsuspecting members of the public to highlight how the information we give away to sources we trust implicitly can be used against us.

Credit cards were used in 92% of fraudulent transactions last year and 43,000 online shopping fraud incidents resulted in losses of £58m.

Christmas is the ideal time for cybercriminals. Their scams blend in with genuine festive deals, making them more successful.

The show’s victims fell for captive WiFi ports, phishing emails, fake websites and a vishing call, but were all shocked at how easily they handed over their information.

Nick Murray, Head of Technology at TSC, said: “We aimed to highlight that fraudsters do not need to exploit zero-day vulnerabilities to compromise today’s shoppers.


“We were slightly surprised by how successful we were, but this can be attributed to our time-limited task and targeted lures based on the volunteers’ open social media profiles and other open source intelligence.


“Scammers will put in the time to create such targeted attacks if they believe they will be rewarded for it. With the information posted openly online, the attacks TSC launched could easily have been from real scammers.”


TSC was approached by Tonight as experts in security awareness and to help make cybersecurity more accessible to the general public.

After filming the episode, Martin Smith MBE, Chairman and Founder of TSC, said: “It was both a pleasure and a privilege for us to work with ITV and the team from the Tonight programme on such an important topic. 

Victims of cybercrime in the UK spend an average 14.8 hours dealing with the aftermath of fraud.

In 2017, 61% of victims of identity theft were 30 to 59 years old, and over 1 million victims were children.

“The ease with which we were able to lure the participants into the traps we set, and their obvious shock and discomfort at their own vulnerability when it was revealed, proved once again how dangerous online scams are.

“Our efforts to educate the public at home and at work against such attacks must never be relaxed.”

Advice on staying safe online was included in the show, as well as on TSC’s website, where some educational materials have been made available.

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