Phishers Celebrate this Festive Season

by CXOtoday Staff    Nov 25, 2008

The identity theft campaign appears to be increasing in magnitude day by day. As November draws to a close, phishing attacks are starting to get more sophisticated in nature.

A recent report by a global email and Web security solutions provider also affirms the same. It notes a marked increase in the phishing attempts. It said that attacks have been detected in the form of false Google AdWords Alert replica, where the scammers are actually leveraging the Google brand in the hopes of getting trusted by the recipients.

The URL contained in the email appears to be the legitimate link to the Google AdWords account Web page. When clicked, the recipient is redirected to a Website hosted in China that is also designed to look like the Google AdWords account home page. It directs the recipients to provide their Google username and password, as well as prompts them to update their account information including credit card number. Unsuspecting users who provide this information run the risk of fraudulent charges to their credit card as well as possibly to their legitimate Google account.

However, as the holidays approach, consumers need to be extra vigilant in responding to unsolicited email including Web links that request account information or credit card numbers. A 10-fold increase in the number of phishing Web sites and subsequent emails on Thanksgiving and the subsequent weekends has been recorded in 2007 already. And now given the continued sophistication of attacks seen in the past 12 months, the phishing volumes may be even greater in the forthcoming gift-giving season of December and January as well, when a large number of people shop on the Web, said the report.

Related Links:
Phishing Threat Heightens Courtesy New Tools