FBI Internet Crime Statistics

On May 7, 2018, the FBI published its report of online crimes, 2017 Internet Crime Report.  This vis summaries the FBI's  findings: The largest losses were attributed to the Business Email Compromise/Email Account Compromise in which the victim is tricked into sending money to criminals. This crime is almost exclusively committed using deceptive emails. Deceptive emails are also used to commit other internet crimes such as data breaches, identity theft, phishing, and ransomware. SP Guard fights email deception by helping users identify suspicious emails.

Successful Phishing – Pretend to be FBI

The FBI warns that cyber criminals are sending phishing emails that impersonate the FBI! Why does this scam work?  Because it is easy for cyber criminals to create very convincing emails that appear to come from the FBI.  The FBI gives some examples here. How big a problem is fake email?  What are the big cyber crime problems? Check in next week when we discuss the FBI's recently released 2017 Internet Crime Annual Report.

Why Do People Phish?

With all the press about phishing and hacking and social engineering, you have to ask, "Why Do People Phish?"  Certainly state actors like Russia and North Korea have political objectives. But they aren't after me.  Why do people phish average businesses and people? A recent prosecution in Virginia makes it clear why people phish -- it's the money! Yesterday (March 6, 2018), Olajide Abraham Eyitayo of Hempstead, NY, pleaded guilty to stealing more than $1.1 in a phishing scam.  The particular scam he used was what the FBI calls a Business Email Compromise. The FBI describes the scam: The schemers [...]

What’s Worse – Phishing or Malware?

New research from Google, U.C. Berkeley and International Computer Science Institute made this stunning finding: We find victims of phishing are 400x more likely to be successfully hijacked compared to a random Google user. In comparison, this rate falls to 10x for data breach victims and roughly 40x for keylogger victims. This just examined one problem -- stolen credentials. Now consider how this applies to installing ransomware and malware, abuse of native processes, human misdirection of files (such as sending payroll tax returns in response to phishing) and the Business Email Compromise. Interestingly, the researchers do not ask why phishing [...]

Massive Google Docs Phishing Attack Sweeps Internet Today

A large scale phishing attack using a google docs exploit rapidly spread across the internet today. Google Docs Phishing Email You can learn about the data processing aspects of this attack. It has been reported in the The Wall Street Journal, The Verge, The New York Times, and many other sources. What about the human aspects of this problem?  Why did people open these emails?  Why do people open any emails? Prof. Arun Vishwanath, in Why Do People Get Phished,  established that people open emails as a matter of habit which is invoked in response to perceived relevance and [...]

2017-05-04T14:06:33+00:00 May 4th, 2017|Consumers and Email, Phishing, SP Guard, spear phishing|

Phishing as a Service

Look familiar? This is the familiar Google login page. The main display is correct. The google favicon is in the tab.  The URL has gmail in it. Oh, but it isn't Gmail! In a recent blog posting, researchers at Fortinet remind us of this unfortunate fact: The easiest way to steal credentials is to ask for them! In this criminal enterprise, the service provides all the tools a bad guy needs. The bad guys offer an easy to use interface to create the fake gmail page. The bad guys provide the backend that harvests the credentials from the page. Finally, the [...]

Iconix Issued Eighth U.S. Patent For Email

ICONIX, Inc., the industry leader in visual email solutions, announced that the United States Patent and Trademark Office has issued Iconix’s eighth patent titled “System and Method for Securely Performing Multiple Stage Email Processing With Embedded Codes.” The abstract for U.S. Patent 9,325,528, dated April 26, 2016, states: “A system and method for performing email processing at multiple stages along an email delivery chain.”   Technology from this patent is applicable to all of the Iconix® offerings, including the Iconix Truemark® service, which helps protect consumer users from phishing attacks, and Iconix SP GuardTM, which helps protect enterprises from spear-phishing attacks.  The [...]

Compromise Monday – Now What?

Last week saw an inauspicious beginning to Cybersecurity Awareness Month with user data compromises announced at: The American Banker Association, number undisclosed T-Mobile, 15 million, over 2 years ending Sept. 16, 2015 Scottrade, 4.6 million during late 2013 and early 2014 Patreon, the crowdsourcing website, 2.3 million users Now you are aware of Cybersecurity. What next?  You can't fix your vendors. You can have some more free credit monitoring to augment the free monitoring you got when Anthem lost your records, or Target, or Neiman Marcus, or The Office of Personnel Management, or [fill in the blank]. Let's look at how credit monitoring [...]

2017-01-07T17:35:10+00:00 October 5th, 2015|Consumers and Email, Cybersecurity - General|

Iconix Issued Seventh U.S. Patent For Email

ICONIX, Inc., the industry leader in visual email solutions, announced on September 15, 2015, that the United States Patent and Trademark Office has issued Iconix's seventh patent titled "User interface for email inbox to call attention differently to different classes of email." The abstract for U.S. Patent 9,137,048, dated September 15, 2015, states: "Sender emails have their Truemarks (icons) displayed in the sender column of a list view” and “fraudulent emails have a fraud icon displayed with a warning in the sender column.” Technology from this patent is used in all of the Iconix® offerings, including the Iconix Truemark® service, which [...]