Microsoft Slams Scams in IE8 Push

Microsoft this week debuted a new campaign for Internet Explorer 8, highlighting how easy it is to fall victim to online scams.

A TV spot kicked off the campaign Monday during Fox’s Lie to Me and Good Guys. It shows real people in New York being asked to provide outrageous personal information (what kind of underwear they prefer) in order to open a new bank account and receive a $500 cash reward. Ultimately, the setup is revealed as a fake, providing an analogy for unwisely sharing private info online. MDC Group’s Crispin Porter + Bogusky handles.

Ryan Gavin, senior director of IE, said the campaign is meant to raise awareness about online security and show how IE8 can help protect consumers. “People talk about security, but they don’t think about it until something bad happens. That’s why the focus of the campaign is malware (malicious software) and how quickly that can become a risk to your online identity,” Gavin said.

Microsoft used real people in a real situation in order to identify with consumers, Gavin said. “Going to New York, the most street-smart city, and having people hand over their private information demonstrates how quickly our expected behavior can impact us,” he added. “Using real people gives the campaign authenticity, and hopefully, will drive people to protect themselves from malware with Internet Explorer 8.”

The new effort builds on Microsoft’s ongoing “Confidence” campaign, which carries the tagline: “Browse with confidence.”

As part of the campaign for IE8, Microsoft will also launch a digital component that takes an approach similar to the TV spot. Gavin didn’t provide the exact time frame, but said that component will roll out soon.