In the second quarter of 2018, Kaspersky Lab’s anti-phishing technologies prevented over 107 million attempts to visit phishing pages, of which 35.7% were related to financial services and targeting customers through fake banking or payment pages. The IT sector was the second hardest hit, with 13.83 of attacks targeting tech companies, which is 12.28 percentage points more in comparison with the previous quarter, according to Kaspersky Lab’s ‘Spam and phishing in Q2 2018’ report.
The results above show that to protect their money, users should be extremely cautious about their security when they surf the Internet. Attacks on customers of financial organizations, including banks, payment systems, and e- shop transactions, are an enduring trend in cybercrime and involve the theft of money as well as of personal data. By creating fake pages of banking, payment or shopping sites, intruders harvest sensitive information from unaware victims – such as their name, password, e-mail addresses, phone numbers, credit card number, and PIN code.
The second quarter of 2018 flustered users of financial services, with 21.1% of attacks featuring banks, 8.17% online shops and 6.43% payment systems – comprising more than one third of attacks overall. Brazil remained the country with the largest share of users attacked by phishers in the second quarter of 2018 (15.51%). This was followed by China (14.44%), Georgia (14.44%), Kirghizstan (13.6%), and Russia (13.27%).
The distribution of different types of financial phishing attacks detected by Kaspersky Lab in Q2 2018
Interestingly, there were almost 60,000 attempts to visit fraudulent web pages featuring popular crypto-currency wallets and exchanges, during the period from April to June. In addition to traditional phishing, which helps to access victim accounts and private key information, cybercriminals try to force their victims to independently transfer crypto-currency to them. One of the tricks is the free distribution of the crypto-currency. Another trick is for scammers to exploit the names of new ICO projects to raise funds from potential investors. Using these two tricks, according to Kaspersky Lab rather rough estimates, over the past quarter, intruders managed to earn at least $2,329,317, even without taking into account any revenues from classic phishing.
“The permanence of attacks targeting financial organizations reflects the fact that more and more people are using electronic money. Still, not all of them are sufficiently aware of the possible risks. So, intruders are actively trying to steal sensitive information through phishing,” said Nadezhda Demidova, lead web content analyst at Kaspersky Lab.
Other key findings in the report include:
Kaspersky Lab experts advise users to take the following measures to protect themselves from phishing:
To learn more about spam and phishing in Q2 2018, read our blogpost.