Computer Crime Research Center


Banks warn against phishing

Date: June 07, 2006
By: Edward D. Murphy

Despite repeated warnings, people still get hooked by "phishing."

Now there's a renewed effort to get people to resist the temptation to respond to what looks like a legitimate inquiry from a bank, credit-card issuer or online auction site. The effort is led by a consortium of 21 Maine banks and a new organization that will be announced today.

The practice, in which Internet scammers phish for victims, has been around for years. And even though customers are told companies won't ever ask for private financial information in an e-mail, an astonishing 5 percent of those who receive e-mail inquiries actually send information that can be used to clean out bank accounts, run up unauthorized charges or take out fraudulent loans.

Sometimes an individual bears the cost, but banks, credit-card companies and retailers often end up with the lion's share of the losses, so it's in their interest to get consumers to avoid the scams.
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