phishing

Be assured: you’ll get phished

The depths to which people will sink to make an easy buck through internet scams never ceases to amaze me, and we have seen phishing scams which have used the recent earthquakes in Japan and New Zealand. 

For example, in the aftermath of the New Zealand earthquake, disgraceful opportunists took advantage of this natural disaster by launching a scam, posing as the Red Cross to take advantage of the world’s sense of charity.

This serves as a grim reminder of the uncomfortable truth that we are never truly protected, especially when brands and ISPs are not doing everything possible to prevent phishing and spoofing scams.

Consumers, spam and high-risk behavior

maawg studyTens of millions of consumers say they’re aware of ‘bots, yet they continue to interact with spam. Chalk it up to some sort of blissful, can’t-happen-to-me oblivion.

The Messaging Anti-Abuse Working Group (MAAWG) just completed a survey of North American and European consumers and found that despite their awareness of the dangers, they’re playing with spam in ways that can leave them vulnerable to malware infections. Half had opened spam, clicked on a link in spam, opened a spam attachment, or replied or forwarded to spam. All these actions open the door to fraud, phishing, identity theft and infection.  Most consumers said they’re aware  ‘bots exist, but only a third believe they’re vulnerable to an infection.

Hundreds of top-level domains? One big headache for businesses

ICANN, the private, non-profit governing body that oversees, amongst other things, the domain name system, is mulling a plan that would accelerate the introduction of hundreds of new top-level domains (TLDs).

Under the plan, companies and organizations wanting to run their own TLD may be able to express interest in doing so as early as the middle of this year.

Celebrity Twitter accounts hacked

On the heels of a phishing scheme that lured unsuspecting Twitter users
to a website that was designed to steal their passwords, the Twitter
accounts of well-known individuals, including United States President-Elect Barack Obama, have been
compromised.

TechCrunch’s Michael Arrington and others noticed unusual tweets on the
official accounts of
the United States President-Elect, CNN’s Rick Sanchez, FOX
News’ Bill O’Reilly and Britney Spears. Companies such as Facebook and
The Huffington Post have seen their official Twitter accounts
compromised as well.