Phishing Attacks Ramp Into 2016 With Major Increase

APWG_Q1_2016.png  Source: APWG

In its most recent Phishing Trends Report, the APWG noted a 250% increase in phishing sites between October 2015 and March 2016 — and the 2016 increase shows the never ending criminal activity is not about to end. “We always see a surge in phishing during the holiday season, but the number of phishing sites kept going up from December into the spring of 2016,” said Greg Aaron, APWG Senior Research Fellow and Vice President of iThreat Cyber Group. “The sustained increase into 2016 shows phishers launching more sites, and is cause for concern.”

Here are a few highlights from the report (PDF) that summarize the current situation:

  • A record-breaking 289,371 unique phishing websites were observed in Q1 2016.
  • 123,555 of the unique sites — more than 40% of the total — were detected in March 2016.
  • More than 75% of the phishing websites observed were hosted in the U.S.
  • And here is something remarkable. China had the highest malware infection rate, with a whopping 57.24% of computers infected. China must be botnet heaven for cybercriminals.

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Your employees are your first line of defense — or the last one if you will — and need to be trained to recognize the red flags.  Frequent simulated phishing attacks in their inbox will drive the required level of behavior change. 

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Topics: Phishing

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