A cybersecurity expert has warned people to be extremely wary of what they click when a pesky pop-up appears on their screen.
Con artists are taking advantage of web users' eagerness to get rid of the annoying notification and are clearing out bank accounts - something I'm certain is everyone's worst nightmare.
Boffins at computer security software company McAfee have explained how scammers can use internet pop-ups to gain control of your devices - and then ultimately, your finances.
After luring you into the trap of downloading dodgy spyware, hackers can snoop on your online activity and steal sensitive information.
The tech experts say it poses a 'significant risk' to unsuspecting web users who can have their identities swiped from under their nose.
This is why you need to be clued up on the classic traits of typical spyware scams - so you can avoid them like the plague.
Although the sneaky software can be physically downloaded onto your device by scammers, most victims are duped into installing it themselves.
Some people end up doing the hackers job for them by innocently agreeing to an untrustworthy download or clicking on a shifty website.
These suspicious web pages typically greet visitors with an annoying pop-up, which most people are in a rush to get rid of.
But McAfee has warned people to resist randomly clicking and to instead take a closer look.
Despite appearing to be mundane, the cybersecurity experts say the notifications are often laced with dangerous spyware to infiltrate your device.
The pop-up typically includes four seemingly ordinary words that, if clicked, are actually the keys that allow hackers to enter your computer.
McAfee told The Sun: "Never click 'Agree,' 'OK,' 'No,' or 'Yes' in a pop-up, as these actions can trigger an automatic spyware download.
"Instead, close the pop-up by hitting the red X or shutting down your browser altogether."
The experts encouraged people to steer clear of any strange pop-ups, websites and downloads.
"Preventing spyware from infecting your system starts with practicing good online habits," McAfee continued.
"Avoid downloading files from untrusted sources, especially torrents and software cracks notorious for being riddled with spyware."
It's best to use reliable sites when surfing the web, or you could end up stumbling into a costly online swindle.
To keep your computer safe, it's also recommended that you keep the devices operating system up to date.
This also applies to your web browser, as having the latest versions will ensure there are no vulnerabilities that scammers can exploit.Featured Image Credit: Getty Stock Image