Scalper bots are snapping up appointments for government services in Israel

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Scalper bots are causing chaos for the Israeli government by trying to turn access to public services into a cash cow.

Bots, otherwise known as web robots, are automatic systems programmed to perform specific functions.

Not all bots are bad; some index web content, others provide chat functions for business customers, and you may come across bots that run checks to find you the best product deals. However, so-called ‘bad’ bots can also be programmed to perform brute-force attacks, disrupt web services, and more.

SEE: Phishing gang that stole millions by luring victims to fake bank websites is broken up by police

Scalpers fall into the second category. While not usually dangerous, scalpers will crawl online services to book and purchase products far more quickly than a human can. Scalpers may target high-demand concert tickets, gaming consoles, and other products, allowing their operators to resell them for a profit.

Now, scalpers are also abusing government services.

On June 23, Akamai researchers said that bots are being used to snap up coveted appointment slots offered by Israeli government services. Unfortunately, these slots are gold dust, with an estimated 700,000 citizens trying to secure an appointment for passport

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