PayPal counsels caution over phishing

22 June 2007
Protecting your savings from fraudsters means staying alert to the dangers of online 'phishing' fraud, secure payments agency PayPal has warned.

As many as 27.4 million people in the UK have received a phishing email, although fewer than one million people actually replied.

But more needs to be done to ensure that UK consumers do not become the unwitting dupes of phishing fraudsters in the light of the sophisticated 'disguises' many criminals assume, PayPal stresses, with 18 million people receiving emails ostensibly from their banks.

"Phishers are using increasingly sophisticated ways to design phishing emails to lure people into thinking they have come from a trusted provider," said Michael Barrett, chief information security officer at PayPal.

Worryingly, just four in ten people said they understood what phishing meant well enough to explain it to someone else, highlighting the need for improved awareness.

"If anyone is ever in doubt as to the authenticity of an email and concerned it may be a phishing scam they should never click on the link embedded in the email," Mr Barrett urged.

Phishing scams try to persuade recipients to email their bank details through and then steal money from their accounts.

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