Check Out The Most Disastrous New Phishing Scams of 2018
Phishing scams are among the most common cyber threats companies and organizations face today, as they can lead to huge financial losses of both money and data. The FBI has recently revealed that cybercriminals brought in at least $676 million last year through business email compromise campaigns, all of which involve tricking company employees into sending real money to fake vendors.
At one point or another, almost all email users have been targeted by phishing scams, as well as those just perusing the internet. When seen that way, everyone around the world engaging in online activity is a potential target for a phishing scam. These digital cons have become so common, most of us wake up to more than one in our inbox.
Phishing scams are also popular because they are simple and relatively low-tech. Moreover, it’s It is easy for cybercriminals using phishing scams to exploit basic weaknesses in human nature. People click links and download attachments when they think there is something exciting, like a “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity, behind the action. They are also tempted by these baiting links if they believe there is some kind of penalty or problem associated with the request. As a result, phishing scams continue to be a problem. Here’s some of the biggest and baddest from 2018 so far:
Phishing scams coming via social media
Phishing scams are now coming to social media. These attacks are cleverly planned and often make references to events currently happening in the news. Facebook messages, SMS, WhatsApp messages, Hangout messages, and other communications of this nature are now rampant as cybercriminals seek to optimize their channels. As a result, email providers and security companies have stepped up their cyber defenses, but to no real avail. Phishing attacks on social media still continue to one of the biggest problems of 2018. Combating this issue is only really possible when all users are cautious and know better than to clink any link without proper verification.
Account takeover attacks
Email account takeover attacks are also on the rise. Cybercriminals infiltrate email accounts and try to form a sense of the users’ location and their general business model. Recent examples include targeting real estate agents who use wire transfers to close home sales.
Attacks planned around the World Cup
Cleverly-executed attacks planned around the World Cup football (held recently in Russia) are among the major phishing scams of 2018. Hackers managed to dupe crazy football fans by offering them fake, free trips to Russia to watch the matches. The phishing emails appealed to sports enthusiasts by promising World Cup tickets and other lottery prizes. Some fans even paid a small fee to claim the prize and filled out several forms of personal information, all of which can be stolen and misused.
Vacation rental scams
Vacation rental scams are also on the rise. Hackers are targeting the email accounts of landlords looking to advertise their listings. The bad actors then offer up fancy homes at attractive, below-market prices. Payments are requested in prepaid debit or gift cards. Although this may seem strange to some, this is a real scam and one of the rampant in 2018.
Julia Sowells318 Posts
Julia Sowells has been a technology and security professional. For a decade of experience in technology, she has worked on dozens of large-scale enterprise security projects, and even writing technical articles and has worked as a technical editor for Rural Press Magazine. She now lives and works in New York, where she maintains her own consulting firm with her role as security consultant while continuing to write for Hacker Combat in her limited spare time.