An overwhelming majority (75 percent) of IT managers surveyed regard traditional spam as the top security threat. Opinion is divided over whether business network security measures have caused phishing attacks to migrate from email to social networking sites like Twitter or Facebook with 37 percent saying it is a growing phenomenon while 31 percent disagree. Instead they regard the move to on-line phishing as a natural response to the growth in the user communities of the main social networking sites.
Clear policies along with improvements in user education and awareness topped recommendations as the best way to beat phishing in all its forms.
“Phishing attacks remain a clear and present threat to businesses,” said Ronan Kavanagh, CEO of SpamTitan Technologies. “There is no evidence to suggest that network security measures are discouraging the number of phishing attacks it is simply that the arrival of social networking in the workplace has presented phishers with a bigger pond to phish in.”
SpamTitan’s survey findings about the phishing threat posed by social networking sites are consistent with another Internet security report from earlier this year. According to antivirus software vendor Kaspersky Labs Facebook’s share of phishing attacks in the first three months of 2010 was just 5.7 percent. This earned it fourth place on the list of most-targeted Web sites a long way behind the leaders HSBC, eBay and PayPal which alone accounts for more than 52 percent of all scams.
To safeguard customers from phishing attacks, the latest SpamTitan release uses a multi-layered approach. It includes new malware detection mechanisms and other significant improvements to the scan engine including a large set of Phishing signatures, support for SURBLs (Spam URL Realtime Blocklists) and heuristic rule tests. The new phishing module allows SpamTitan to deliver better and more generic detection of phishing emails by searching for URLs in email messages and can also detect day-zero phishing emails.