Posts Tagged With ‘phishing’

Bank online with confidence

Authored by  – Anand Naik, Managing Director-Sales, India & SAARC, Symantec

Gone are the days of standing in a queue at the bank, with a token in hand waiting to make a transaction! Today, the internet allows us to perform so many banking transactions online – from checking account balances and transferring funds, to reviewing our credit reports and making bill payments. We no longer have to get in the car, drive to the bank, or communicate with a bank teller in person. For most of us, online banking offers tremendous time savings and the option to bank at our convenience. With the rapid advancement of technology, we’re now able to use our mobile devices to help take care of our banking needs, regardless of whether we are at home, at work or even on holiday!

However, there’s always a flip side to such major changes. Banking has evolved to be literally at our fingertips, but this convenience comes at a risk as the cybercriminals are continuously on the lookout to steal our money, our information and identities. The Norton Cybercrime Report 2012 found that globally, 18 adults become a victim of cybercrime every second, resulting in more than one and a half million cybercrime victims each day. The direct cost of cybercrime was an average of US$197 per victim across the world and in India, that amount was only slightly lower at US$192 or INR 10,585. Symantec’s Internet Security Threat Report XVIII reports that in 2012 mobile malware increased by 58 percent. With a 30 percent increase in the number of mobile OS vulnerabilities, consumers using banking services via their mobile devices are at a higher risk of data theft.

The Norton Cybercrime Report 2012 also revealed that 42 million Indians have been victims of cybercrime in the past 12 months, which is a 75 percent increase from the number of cybercrime victims the previous year. Some of the more common techniques cybercriminals use to steal our information are phishing and pharming. Phishing is a method by which fake emails – for example, messages that look like they are coming from our banks – are sent to users asking for their account numbers and passwords. Pharming techniques are used by cybercriminals who create legitimate-looking web pages to trick visitors into divulging these details. Both of these methods are examples of social engineering – where the users themselves are tricked, duped or lured into parting with private information.

Just last year, Symantec observed attacks where phishers spoofed the Reserve Bank of India’s Web site as a ploy for a tax refund scam. The phishing site attempted to lure users by stating that the bank would take full responsibility for depositing the tax refund to the user’s personal bank account. The user was prompted to select the name of the bank from a list of eight banks and enter their customer ID and password. Through this, phishers intended to steal the confidential information of customers of several banks from a single phishing site. The following page asked for credit/debit card number and PIN number. After these details were entered, the phishing site displayed a message acknowledging that the request for the tax refund has been submitted successfully. The user was then redirected to the legitimate Reserve Bank of India site, little knowing that they had just become a cybercrime victim.

While these clever ploys by cybercriminals may lead many of us to hesitate from banking online, there are precautions we can take to ensure that our information and hard-earned money are safe regardless of the channel we use for transactions.

If we are aware, vigilant and follow some basic guidelines, we can enjoy the convenience of banking online with confidence.

Quote from Anand Naik, “Today, cybercrime is much more prevalent than people realize. Cybercriminals have moved from more traditional forms of attack such as mass distributed malware, to more targeted attacks that include social engineering to gain access to sensitive and personal information. With an increasing number of Indians banking online, the need to remain alert has never been greater. With some common rules and a comprehensive security solution in place, we can all safely enjoy the benefits of online banking.”

EC-Council Forewarns Organizations About the Dangers of Phishing Attacks as Cybercriminals Move to More Concentrated Hacking Methods

New research shows that cyber criminals are moving away from mass spam attacks and focusing on more targeted hacking techniques. The most common of these methods is phishing. EC-Council has released a comprehensive guide on steps organizations can take to prevent disastrous security breaches.
February 13, 2012, Albuquerque, NM- Recent research shows that cybercriminals have moved from large mass spam attacks to more targeted techniques. One of the most common of these attacks is phishing, an attempt by cybercriminals and identity thieves to obtain sensitive information by masquerading as a legitimate and trustworthy source.

In order to keep organizations’ information secure, it is crucial for Information Assurance leaders to understand the two types of phishing methods: spear phishing and whaling, and the devastating risks they carry. Spear phishing is the most commonly used phishing method. Experts cite the amount of money generated as the reason for the switch to more concentrated attacks.

According to recent research conducted by Cisco, “Spear phishing attacks have proven to be both highly dangerous to victims and immensely valuable to cyber criminals. A vastly customized phishing attack can net 10 times the profit of a mass attack.” Cisco estimates the annual global cost of targeted attacks to organizations is $1.29 billion.

Sameer Shelke, IT Services and Risk Management Leader, says “Tackling phishing attacks can be immensely challenging as phishing emails are usually very convincing and it is hard to distinguish them from genuine emails. Risk management and control mechanisms against such social engineering attacks need to be dynamic in order to keep up with evolving security risks.” Shelke goes on to say, “While upgrading to advanced security solutions is crucial, educating people about phishing is also equally important.”


EC-Council recently released a White Paper written by Shelke that explores differences between spear phishing and whaling and offers solutions to combat phishing attacks. To download Shelke’s White Paper “Shield Your Business – Combat Phishing Attacks”, please visit: be successful at combating these attacks, an organization needs to have strong leadership in place. An effective Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) will lead a high performing information security (IS) program that protects against cyber crime and security breaches. EC-Council created the Global CISO Executive Summit Series to unite the IS leaders across the world in the fight against cyber crime. The CISO Executive Summits provide a platform for continuous learning where the most recent infosec threats and landscape evolution can be discussed.


EC-Council is committed to providing Information Assurance Executive Professionals with the latest Information Security news and trends from the industry’s leading experts If this White Paper is of interest, it is encouraged to also look into EC-Council’s Certified Chief Information Security Officer (C|CISO) Certification and EC-Council’s CISO Executive Summit Series. To view the full report from the CISO Executive Summit, please go to this link. If you would like to attend or speak at upcoming CISO Executive Summits and would like to receive more information, please click here.


Marissa Easter – Marketing Communications Specialist (


About EC-Council’s Chief Information Security Officer (C|CISO) Certification:

C|CISO is the first certification of its kind to equip Information Assurance leaders with the most effective toolset to defend organizations from cyber attacks. It recognizes an individual’s accumulated skills in developing and executing an information security management strategy in alignment with organization goals. Applicants can take advantage of the Grandfather Provision until September 2012. The Grandfather Provision is open to highly-skilled and experienced professionals who can demonstrate and prove proficiency in the 5 C|CISO domains. For more information about C|CISO, please visit:

About EC-Council:

The International Council of E-Commerce Consultants (EC-Council) is a member-based organization that certifies individuals in cyber security and e-commerce. It is the owner and developer of 20 security certifications, including Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH), Computer Hacking Forensics Investigator (CHFI), Certified Security Analyst /Licensed Penetration Tester (ECSA/LPT) and Certified Chief Information Security Officer (C|CISO). EC-Council has trained over 90,000 security professionals and certified more than 40,000 members. EC-Council’s certification programs are offered by over 450 training centers across 87 countries. These certifications are recognized worldwide and have received endorsements from various government agencies including the U.S. Department of Defense via DoD 8570.01-M, the Montgomery GI Bill, National Security Agency (NSA) and the Committee on National Security Systems (CNSS). EC-Council also operates EC-Council University and the global series of Hacker Halted information security conferences. For more information about EC-Council visit, follow @ECCouncil on Twitter, LinkedIn or visit EC-Council’s Facebook page.