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UK - Online Fraud & Phishing Attacks Rising

The new figures from the Association of Payment Clearing Services (APACS) reveal that hackers stole £52.2 Million from the online bank users in the UK during 2008 against £29.9 Million during 2007. APACS claims that majority of loss occurred due to rising phishing attacks in the country.

The phishing attacks targeting the banks' users increased 71% during 2008 against 2007. Besides, 44,000 attacks were recorded in 2008 in comparison to 26,000 in 2007.

APACS informs that in 2008, one out of every five online bank users, as per their research, was prone to phishing attacks due to lack of awareness, as reported by ComputerWeekly on March 19, 2009.

Chief of Public Relation at APACS, Jemma Smith, states that a major leap is noted in phishing scams. Many users are not taking adequate measures to safeguard themselves, as reported by Vnunet on March 19, 2009. Unfortunately, 20% of online bank users in the UK are still attacked by phishing cons.

Moreover, online bank users are attacked by malware which are capable of monitoring computer activities, stealing security information like passwords and user names. Often, the hackers send mails randomly to lure users to click on the link and visit a site that downloads the virus.

Therefore, the security experts from the banking authorities always suggest online bank users to switch on the computer's firewall and keep their anti-virus software updated. In addition, they should not open the mail if they do not recognize the sender.

In the mean time, the security experts state that it is not surprising to witness such a major increase in online banking fraud year after year, but these figures indicate that computer users are adopting the online culture without having any prior knowledge of the risks involved.

As per the reports, the Metropolitan Police Service Police Central e-Crime Unit (PCeU), as the major force for e-crime, will help to tackle the losses by managing the work of police officials to improve the training, build the national proceedings and improve the police response to e-crime across the country.

Related article: US Passes Baton to Asia in Spam Relay

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