Thursday, October 15, 2009
A New Kind of Phish Bait
The explosion of social networking websites means online users must expand the sound fraud prevention practices they learned with email, says one online security firm.
Cyveillance, a provider of cyber-intelligence services to financial institutions, "detected nearly 180,000 distinct phishing attacks this summer, one of the highest rates it's seen so far, and that hackers are now increasingly adding social network sites, voice and SMS texting channels to their traditional email spam arsenal," reports the Credit Union Times (cutimes.com).
"There has been a natural evolution of attack vectors over the years, which began with malware on floppy disks, progressing to emails, Web sites and now other avenues including Twitter, Facebook and even cellular phones," said Panos Anastassiadis, president and CEO of Cyveillance in Arlington, Va.
Many people have adopted sound fraud prevention practices when it comes to email communication (being wary of unsolicited emails, avoiding opening attachments and links from unknown senders, etc.). But as fraudsters are increasingly exploiting other communication channels like social networking sites, it's important that consumers continue to keep their guards up and always be careful when releasing private or sensitive information via phone, text, internet, or otherwise.
If you have suspicion about the authenticity of a financial institution's communication vehicles, such as website, social networking sites, email, text messaging, or otherwise, contact the institution using a phone number you know to be correct.
Learn more about cyberfraud prevention from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) website at www.onguardonline.gov.