Phishing And Ransomware – Fraud On The Internet

hacker phishing ransomware

Phishing and Ransomware are two of the most common cyber attacks in today’s Internet landscape, but also some of the most misunderstood. Phishing involves sending fraudulent emails from seemingly legitimate sources by asking the recipient to provide personal information such as passwords, bank account or credit card numbers. Ransomware is software that is downloaded or installed on a device and asks the recipient to pay a ransom in exchange for the return of stolen data or personal information. Essentially, both cyber-attacks focus on the practice of digital blackmail. For this reason, phishing ransomware attacks are one of the most dangerous threats to personal and professional information.

Phishing ransomware attacks begin with a seemingly legitimate email. The recipient is asked to open a file or click on a link. Once the attachment or link is opened, the hacker gains access to the device’s data and can distribute the malicious payload. These attacks are harder to detect because the phishing emails may come from a known sender and are often addressed to the recipient personally. They contain attachments that attract attention and curiosity and prompt the victim to open them. Sometimes the attachment even looks legitimate – with the company logo in the header – so the recipient has no idea until the ransom demand is displayed and the files are no longer accessible.

What is the nature of these attacks ?

It is reported that 93% of phishing emails are phishing ransomware emails, and the majority of them are directed at individuals with their personal and professional email accounts. Health and education sectors are the main victims of phishing ransomware attacks, although other sectors are by no means safe. In the recent ransomware attack “Defray”, which targeted health and education organizations in the U.S. and U.K., a Microsoft Word attachment was sent in custom messages to spread the malware. According to reports, the attachment for healthcare professionals is said to be from the Director of Information Management and Technology, contain patient records and display the hospital’s logo on the header, making it appear legitimate. In the education sector, universities may not prioritize network protection during the onboarding process, often allowing new personal devices to enter the network without gaining sufficient control over access for these devices.

As hackers expand their methods of social engineering, the responsibility for educating employees about what to look for and how to protect their devices rests with the employer. IT departments should regularly send information to employees, outlining potential cyber threats they are looking for and providing best practices if they believe they may be attacked.

However, phishing attacks present a unique challenge because they are typically targeted at a specific employee or department and allow hackers to infiltrate the organization’s network. Nonetheless, it is important that employees make every effort to stay current on the latest threats and vulnerabilities on the Internet, especially those related to their industry. In addition to an effective organizational policy to control and protect access from devices on the corporate network, cyber-education programs have immense value in fending off threats such as phishing ransomware attacks that may be under the radar due to their targeted, socially constructed approach.

People continue to be victims of social engineering attacks, the report says. Email remains the primary entry point for malware, with 96% of attacks occurring through inboxes. The report finds that companies are almost three times more likely to be hurt by social engineering attacks than actual vulnerabilities. This highlights the need for continuous cyber-training of employees.

hacker phishing ransomware

How are we affected?

 People continue to be victims of social engineering attacks, the report says. Email remains the primary entry point for malware, with 96% of attacks occurring through inboxes. The report finds that companies are almost three times more likely to be hurt by social engineering attacks than actual vulnerabilities. This highlights the need for continuous cyber-training of employees.

 On average, 78% of respondents were not responsible for a phishing attack test last year. However, 4% of respondents did, and a criminal only needs one victim to click on his malicious link or download it to gain access to an organization.

 Employees who click a phishing link once are more likely to click it again, but this is not necessarily their fault. To help them succeed, IT may consider working from a sandbox Windows computer, iPad or Chromebook, which have fewer vulnerabilities to malware.

 Keep in mind that all connected devices are potential victims of ransomware phishing attacks. While ransomware is well understood by more “traditional” devices such as computers, phones, and servers, IoT devices are also an entry point and inherently less secure. Find out about all the devices on your network, including those used to control the temperature in a room, the smart coffee machine or the smart TVs in the boardroom.

How do you protect yourself from these attacks ?

The Chaos Computer Club appeals to many computer/and Internet users to share knowledge to promote a safer and more secure Internet environment for all users. Take preventative measures to avoid being the next victim and inform your colleagues when you hear of threats that prevent them from spreading, and always be aware of what you are looking for, receiving and sending over the Internet. Awareness and education are the best ways to defeat hackers.

Student Stress Work/Life Balance

 What defenses are useful?

Traditional protection methods based on malware signatures and basic protection rules have proven ineffective against ransomware threats. In fact, attackers design their ransomware to bypass traditional web and email protection, which tends to set configurations and forget them.

The ransomware threat should be addressed with a comprehensive assessment of the organization’s countermeasures to understand if they are truly capable of responding to the latest threats.

How will these attacks evolve in the future ?

The profitability of ransomware is flourishing due to the simplicity of its business model and the ease of use of its operating model. According to the latest Cyber Threat Intelligence, ransomware attacks have shifted the focus to industries that have no choice but to pay, such as healthcare, small and medium businesses, governments, critical infrastructure and education. Spear phishing campaigns have been used primarily to send ransomware to these industries. Attackers know that valuable or confidential data is stored in these industries. They typically have difficulty funding their IT capacity and are often subject to regulations that can affect their ability to efficiently use backups. Before signing up at online providers you should read information such as this casino bonus comparison on to not get scammed.

What is recommended against phishing and ransomware ?

There are a number of methods you should follow to minimize your exposure to phishing and ransomware.

Organizations should implement a strong security awareness program to help users make better decisions about the content they receive via email, what they view or click on in social media, how they access the Internet, and so on. It is important to invest adequately in employee training so that the “human firewall” provides an adequate first line of defense against the increasingly complex phishing and extortion software.

In addition, organizations should occasionally test their employees to determine if their security awareness training is effective. These tests should trigger an action plan and measure the organization’s successes and failures.

cyber security data security


Be especially careful if you unexpectedly receive emails and have to enter any data. Pay special attention to the “httpS- protocol” of your browser and always be curious what kind of page you are visiting. And pay attention to the tips given above so that you are spared from such attacks.

Even More Stories You May Like (courtesy of Google)

Comments are closed.