2010 losses from phishing sites totaled 20 billion yuan

16:00, March 16, 2011      

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The number of new Chinese phishing websites reached 1.8 million in 2010 and as many as 44 million people became victims of phishing websites, suffering losses totaling 20 billion yuan, said Qi Lin, secretary-general of the Anti-Phishing Alliance of China (APAC), on March 15.

Qi said that taobao.com as well as the official websites of the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) and China Central Television (CCTV) are the main targets of phishing. Hot social events, such as earthquake donations, the website registration program by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology and the Guangzhou Asian Games, were also targets of phishing.

Furthermore, free domain names ending in ".tk" and ".co.cc" are becoming the favorites of phishing criminals because these domain names have subjectively lowered crime costs and have become an accomplice of the phishing sites to some extent.

Phishing criminals mainly cheat consumers by setting up phishing websites using their own domain names. However, an increasing number of criminals also cheat consumers by putting phishing pages on regular websites or sending phishing emails after accessing email accounts of enterprises.

Since 2010, phishing criminals have come to use trojan horse viruses to cheat online consumers making payments, which is the last procedure of online shopping.

Qi said that fraudulent websites such as fake payment transaction sites are the most common phishing website because criminals can directly steal bank users' accounts and other information to reap profits. Tourism, ticket booking and group purchase websites also often become victims of phishing.

By Li Jia, People's Daily Online
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