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Phishing, Very Expensive For Users

As per a survey by Gartner Inc., the number of adults in US who are sure or believe that they have got phishing e-mails has almost doubled since 2004. phishing has resulted in financial losses of more than $2.8 Billion in 2006.

The report shows that in last year, individuals with an annual income of over $100,000 got an average of 112 fraud e-mails. For PC users in all earning brackets, the number was 74 mails. Such mails appear authentic but have links to Websites, like bogus banking sites, which try to dupe people into revealing personal information.

Avivah Litan, Gartner Analyst, said that phishing mails are increasing and phishers are earning 5 times more than 2005. They are improving their schemes.

More importantly, the average percentage victims' recovery dropped to 54% in 2006 from 80% in 2005. The report puts forth that a transformation in strategies by scam designers is partly responsible for this change. Financial institutions continue to be the most preferred targets of attackers. But fraudsters are exploiting the fictitious or less-conventional brands, like sweepstakes contest, also as they have weaker of almost non-existent attack controls.

Litan informed that this year, around $1244 was lost per phishing strike, up from $256. As per Gartner's estimates, around 3.5 Million Americans would reveal secret information to attackers in 2006, up from last year's 1.9 Million.

Litan added that despite their efforts, customer sites (such as PayPal and eBay that are a check for phishing attacks) have not been able to stop the phishers.

Cons send fake mails that appear as if they are from your bank's site or from credit card firm. These bogus mails ask individuals to reveal sensitive details that are used by phishers to thieve from them.

Related article: Phishing With A Redirector Code

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