During the first six months of 2013 720 different brands were targeted by phishing attacks, an increase of 18 percent from the last six months of 2012, according the latest report from the Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG). The two most targeted brands during the first half of 2013 were PayPal and Taobao.com.
While the total number of phishing attacks decreased relative to both the first half and second half of 2012, the number of different phishing targets reached the highest level yet at 720. The APWG additionally found that the average length of time a phishing attack stays live increased considerably from 26 hours in the second half of 2012 to over 44 hours in the first six months of 2013.
While 720 different brands were targeted with phishing attacks in the first half of 2013, half of these targets were only attacked one to three times during the six month period. Financial institutions were the most targeted industry making up over 40 percent of the 720 targeted brands. This was followed by companies in the money transfer industry at nearly 20 percent, eCommerce brands with 16.6 percent and social networking or email companies at 12.4 percent.
PayPal alone was targeted with over 18 percent of all phishing attacks in the first six months of 2013, by far the most of any one brand. This was more than two times the number of phishing attacks targeted at Taobao.com, the largest eCommerce merchant and marketplace in China, which was the second most attacked brand being targeted by 9 percent of all phishing attacks. According to the APWG 1H2013 Global Phishing Survey, phishing attacks are burgeoning in China right along with the growth in eCommerce.
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