Perimeter

3/9/2017
09:00 AM
Steve Zurier
Steve Zurier
Slideshows
Connect Directly
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

9 Phishing Lures that Could Hijack your 2017 Tax Refund

Scammers are taking an aggressive approach to tax season this year, packing attachments and links with banking Trojans, and fairly new strains of ransomware.
Previous
1 of 10
Next

Image Source: Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

Tax season has arrived – and so have the scammers. Unfortunately, crooks either prey on people’s sense of fairness and willingness to comply with authority, or appeal to a taxpayer’s fear of paying late or not complying with the law.

Patrick Wheeler, director of threat intelligence, for Proofpoint, says social engineering is increasingly common and very effective, plus fraudsters are packing attachments and links with banking Trojans and fairly new strains of ransomware.

“In the past, the tax lures were laggards,” Wheeler says. “But not this year. They’ve been adopting more of the phishing trends and tactics that we see all year ‘round.”

Carl Leonard, principal security analyst at Forcepoint, says scammers also use various phishing scams to collect a victim’s personal financial information.

“The scams range from a letter from the IRS promising a $7.5 million refund, to a promise from Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs in the UK that says people can pay their taxes in the form of iTunes vouchers.”

While it can get silly, the results can be serious. Proofpoint’s Wheeler says most of these scams were discovered in February and will be active through the end of tax season.

For more information, check out the research reports from Proofpoint and Forcepoint. The nine slides are based on research from both reports.

Organizations that receive a phishing email scam involving the IRS or a W-2 form should forward it to [email protected] and place “W2 Scam” in the subject line. Organizations that fall victim to these scams should also file a complaint with the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3). 

 

Steve Zurier has more than 30 years of journalism and publishing experience, most of the last 24 of which were spent covering networking and security technology. Steve is based in Columbia, Md. View Full Bio

Previous
1 of 10
Next
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Crowdsourced vs. Traditional Pen Testing
Alex Haynes, Chief Information Security Officer, CDL,  3/19/2019
BEC Scammer Pleads Guilty
Dark Reading Staff 3/20/2019
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win a Starbucks Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: Well, at least it isn't Mobby Dick!
Current Issue
5 Emerging Cyber Threats to Watch for in 2019
Online attackers are constantly developing new, innovative ways to break into the enterprise. This Dark Reading Tech Digest gives an in-depth look at five emerging attack trends and exploits your security team should look out for, along with helpful recommendations on how you can prevent your organization from falling victim.
Flash Poll
The State of Cyber Security Incident Response
The State of Cyber Security Incident Response
Organizations are responding to new threats with new processes for detecting and mitigating them. Here's a look at how the discipline of incident response is evolving.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2016-10743
PUBLISHED: 2019-03-23
hostapd before 2.6 does not prevent use of the low-quality PRNG that is reached by an os_random() function call.
CVE-2019-9947
PUBLISHED: 2019-03-23
An issue was discovered in urllib2 in Python 2.x through 2.7.16 and urllib in Python 3.x through 3.7.2. CRLF injection is possible if the attacker controls a url parameter, as demonstrated by the first argument to urllib.request.urlopen with \r\n (specifically in the query string or PATH_INFO) follo...
CVE-2019-9948
PUBLISHED: 2019-03-23
urllib in Python 2.x through 2.7.16 supports the local_file: scheme, which makes it easier for remote attackers to bypass protection mechanisms that blacklist file: URIs, as demonstrated by triggering a urllib.urlopen('local_file:///etc/passwd') call.
CVE-2019-9945
PUBLISHED: 2019-03-23
SoftNAS Cloud 4.2.0 and 4.2.1 allows remote command execution. The NGINX default configuration file has a check to verify the status of a user cookie. If not set, a user is redirected to the login page. An arbitrary value can be provided for this cookie to access the web interface without valid user...
CVE-2019-9942
PUBLISHED: 2019-03-23
A sandbox information disclosure exists in Twig before 1.38.0 and 2.x before 2.7.0 because, under some circumstances, it is possible to call the __toString() method on an object even if not allowed by the security policy in place.