Australia's most dangerous woman

Nicole Kidman - the most dangerous woman in Australia (on the internet). Photo / supplied
Nicole Kidman - the most dangerous woman in Australia (on the internet). Photo / supplied

Actress Nicole Kidman is still Australia's most dangerous woman on the internet.

That is according to the number of viruses linked to an online search of her name, based on research compiled by internet security firm McAfee.

For the second year in a row, Kidman has topped the list of 25 of the most risky Australian celebrities to search for on the net, with nine per cent of websites linked to her name registering online threats.

The report, in its fifth year, analyses sites that lure people with the promise of celebrity pictures or information but instead download malware or harmful software to their computers.

"If you go and do a Google search of her - out of the roughly 750,000 sites, 67,500 are deemed to have some sort of malicious software," said Sean Duca, enterprise solutions architect at McAfee.

Fellow actor Naomi Watts came in second this year, followed by Rose Byrne.

And despite their deaths, the late actor Heath Ledger and TV personality Steve Irwin are still hot targets in the virtual world for malicious spyware firms, coming in at sixth and seventh on the list.

In Australia, the research involved a test of 25 of the most popular celebrities picked by researchers, based on search engines with domains using ".com.au".

Beyond the Australian list, Victoria's Secret model Heidi Klum was named the most dangerous celebrity online overall, with Cameron Diaz the second-most dangerous.

Searching for Klum's name poses a nine per cent chance of downloading spyware, adware, spam, phishing, viruses and other malware via a malicious site.

"The key thing is to be careful, and have your wits about you on what site you're visiting," said Duca.

"Threats have changed today and there are new security trends out there."

Australia's top-10 most dangerous celebrities in cyberspace:

1. Nicole Kidman

2. Naomi Watts

3. Rose Byrne

4. Elle Macpherson

5. Chris Hemsworth

6. Heath Ledger

7. Steve Irwin

8. Delta Goodrem

9. Keith Urban

10. Dannii Minogue

Overall top-10 most dangerous celebrities in cyberspace:

1. Heidi Klum

2. Cameron Diaz

3. Piers Morgan

4. Jessica Biel

5. Katherine Heigl

6. Mila Kunis

7. Anna Paquin

8. Adriana Lima

9. Scarlett Johansson

10. Emma Stone, Brad Pitt and Rachel McAdams

Source: McAfee

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