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News

March Sees Significant Rise in Phishing Attacks

Symantec : 15 March, 2010  (Technical Article)
Spam and Phishing report from Symantec shows March rise in phishing with continued spamming trend relating to the exploitation of natural disasters and car recalls
Symantec's March State of Spam and Phishing report has found that spammers are using recent car recalls as a premise to deliver spam messages and 'phish' personal details. Also this month, Symantec has noted a continued trend towards exploiting natural disasters with a high volume of spam and phishing linked to the Haiti and Chile earthquakes. Overall, phishing attacks increased by 16 per cent in March compared to February.

There have been several global product recalls from multiple car manufacturers recently which spammers have sought to exploit. The report uncovers examples where spammers try to trick the user to give up personal information by pretending to be a legal industry representative.

Amanda Grady, Principal Anti-Spam Analyst, Symantec, explains: "The British media have extensively covered the recent recalls from automotive manufacturers in the news. The interest from the public has been noticed by spammers who are tailoring phishing emails to benefit from the fear of car defects leading to accidents. By offering "free private case evaluation" and taking advantage of "sudden acceleration danger" spammers are instead collecting personal details for malicious use."

The following trends are also all highlighted in the March 2010 report:

* Spam from .cn URLs on the decline, .ru is on the rise
* A 12 per cent rise in phishing from non-English sites, attacks on Italian and French banks
* Online auction marketing tools under attack
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