Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.


09:35 AM
Dark Reading
Dark Reading
Products and Releases

Spam and Phishing in Q2: Financial sector customers top targets of phishing attacks

Kaspersky Lab's quarterly analysis finds banks, e-shops and payment systems attacked most by phishers

Woburn, MA – August 14, 2018 – Kaspersky Lab’s ‘Spam and Phishing in Q2 2018’ report found that in the second quarter of 2018, the company’s anti-phishing technologies prevented over 107 million attempts to visit phishing pages, of which over one third (35.7%) of attempts were related to financial services, targeting customers via fraudulent banking or payment pages. The IT sector was hit the second hardest, with 13.83 percent of attacks targeting technology companies, which is a 12.28 percent increase compared to the previous quarter.

The results in the report demonstrate that in order to protect their money, users should be extremely cautious about their security when browsing the internet. Attacks on customers of financial organizations, including banks, payment systems and e-shop transactions, is a continuing trend in cybercrime, involving the theft of money as well as personal data. By creating fraudulent pages of banking, payment or shopping sites, intruders harvest sensitive information from unaware victims, including their name, password, email addresses, phone numbers, credit card information and PIN code.

The second quarter of 2018 flustered users of financial services, with nearly a quarter (21.1%) of attacks featuring banks, followed by e-shops (8.17%) and payment systems (6.43%). 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


Furthermore, there were almost 60,000 attempts to visit fraudulent web pages featuring popular crypto-currency wallets and exchanges from April to June 2018. In addition to traditional phishing, which helps access victim accounts and private key information, cybercriminals try to force their victims to independently transfer crypto-currency to them. One of the tactics is free distribution of the crypto-currency, while another is for scammers to exploit the names of new ICO projects to raise funds from potential investors. Using these two tricks, Kaspersky Lab estimates that intruders earned more than $2.3 million, even without taking into account any revenues from classic phishing schemes.


“The permanence of attacks targeting financial organizations reflects the fact that more and more people are using electronic money,” said Nadezhda Demidova, lead web content analyst, Kaspersky Lab. “Still, not all of them are sufficiently aware of the possible risks, so intruders are actively trying to steal sensitive information through phishing.”


Other key findings in the report include:



●       The main targets of phishing attacks have remained the same since the end of last year. They are primarily global internet portals and the financial sector, including banks, payment services and online stores.

●       In comparison with Q1, the share of attacks on financial organizations decreased by 8.22 percent, while targeting IT companies increased by 12.28 percent.


●       In the second quarter of 2018, the amount of spam peaked in May (51%). The average share of spam in email traffic worldwide was 50 percent.

●       China became the most popular source of spam, overtaking the U.S. and Germany.

●       The country most targeted by malicious mail was once again Germany. Russia came second, followed by the United Kingdom, Brazil and Italy.


Kaspersky Lab experts advise users to take the following measures to protect themselves from phishing:

●       Always check the link address and the sender’s email before clicking anything.

●       Before clicking any link, check if the link address shown is the same as the actual hyperlink the link will take you to – this can be checked by hovering your mouse over the link.

●       Only use a secure connection, especially when visiting sensitive websites. As a minimum precaution, do not use unknown or public Wi-Fi without password protection. For maximum protection, use VPN solutions that encrypt your traffic and remember, if you are using an insecure connection, cybercriminals can invisibly redirect you to phishing pages.

●       Check the HTTPS connection and domain name when you open a webpage. This is especially important when you are using websites which contain sensitive data – such as sites for online banking, online shops, email, social media, etc.

●       Never share your sensitive data, such as logins, passwords or credit card information, with a third party. Official companies will never ask for this type of data via email.

●       Use a reliable security solution with behavior-based anti-phishing technologies, such as Kaspersky Total Security, to detect and block spam and phishing attacks.


Read the full ‘Spam and Phishing in Q2 2018’ report on Securelist.com.


About Kaspersky Lab
Kaspersky Lab is a global cybersecurity company, which has been operating in the market for over 20 years. Kaspersky Lab’s deep threat intelligence and security expertise is constantly transforming into next generation security solutions and services to protect businesses, critical infrastructure, governments and consumers around the globe. The company’s comprehensive security portfolio includes leading endpoint protection and a number of specialized security solutions and services to fight sophisticated and evolving digital threats. Over 400 million users are protected by Kaspersky Lab technologies and we help 270,000 corporate clients protect what matters most to them. Learn more at www.kaspersky.com


Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Where Businesses Waste Endpoint Security Budgets
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  7/15/2019
US Mayors Commit to Just Saying No to Ransomware
Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  7/16/2019
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
Building and Managing an IT Security Operations Program
As cyber threats grow, many organizations are building security operations centers (SOCs) to improve their defenses. In this Tech Digest you will learn tips on how to get the most out of a SOC in your organization - and what to do if you can't afford to build one.
Flash Poll
The State of IT Operations and Cybersecurity Operations
The State of IT Operations and Cybersecurity Operations
Your enterprise's cyber risk may depend upon the relationship between the IT team and the security team. Heres some insight on what's working and what isn't in the data center.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
PUBLISHED: 2019-07-21
** REJECT ** DO NOT USE THIS CANDIDATE NUMBER. ConsultIDs: CVE-2002-0639. Reason: This candidate is a reservation duplicate of CVE-2002-0639. Notes: All CVE users should reference CVE-2002-0639 instead of this candidate. All references and descriptions in this candidate have been removed to prevent ...
PUBLISHED: 2019-07-20
An issue was discovered in PrinterOn Central Print Services (CPS) through 4.1.4. The core components that create and launch a print job do not perform complete verification of the session cookie that is supplied to them. As a result, an attacker with guest/pseudo-guest level permissions can bypass t...
PUBLISHED: 2019-07-20
An issue was discovered in the wp-code-highlightjs plugin through 0.6.2 for WordPress. wp-admin/options-general.php?page=wp-code-highlight-js allows CSRF, as demonstrated by an XSS payload in the hljs_additional_css parameter.
PUBLISHED: 2019-07-20
An issue was discovered on AudioCodes Mediant 500L-MSBR, 500-MBSR, M800B-MSBR and 800C-MSBR devices with firmware versions F7.20A to F7.20A.251. An internal interface exposed to the link-local address allows attackers in the local network to access multiple quagga VTYs. Attackers can...
PUBLISHED: 2019-07-19
An arbitrary file copy vulnerability in mod_copy in ProFTPD up to 1.3.5b allows for remote code execution and information disclosure without authentication, a related issue to CVE-2015-3306.