Phishers Keep Up Their Antics on Social-Networking Sites, Online Classifieds, Gaming Industries

Image: Paul Moore

A report reveals phishing gangs continue increasing their efforts against brands in the social networking, online classifieds and online gaming industries.

Researchers of the APWG Phishing Activity Trends Report found that attacks on brands in the online retail, auction and financial services sectors decreased while payment services increased more than 10 percent in 2010. The category of  “Other” — social networking, online classifieds and online gaming industries — climbed to 18 percent, from 13 percent in 2009.

Ihab Shraim, chief security officer and vice president, network and system engineering at MarkMonitor and APWG Trends Report contributing analyst said, “The increase in the ‘Other’ category is attributed to the sharp increase in attacks against the online classifieds, social networking and gaming industries.”

Although the relative proportion of crimeware genre remained constant during the surveyed term, the number of infected computers increased more than 10 percent quarter over quarter. APWG reports the proportion of infected computers grew from more than 47 percent in the fourth quarter of 2009 to more than 53 percent in the first quarter of 2010.

The report also highlighted how the United States continued its position as the top country hosting phishing sites during the first quarter of 2010, with China maintaining a top-three listing during the three-month period.

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