Sunday, November 23, 2008

Can you spot phishing emails? Are you sure?

Think you can spot the difference between a legitimate e-mail and a phishing scam sitting in your in-box? According to one security vendor, many people can't.

The SonicWall Phishing and Spam IQ Quiz test presents a series of e-mails that may or may not be from various (USA) vendors and service providers. You must decide whether the e-mail is a phishing attempt or legitimate. Afterward, a score card is presented and if you got any questions wrong, there's an opportunity to see why: A page opens up identifying the clues that should have told you a given e-mail was probably bogus.

Here's some scary phishing facts that should spur you into taking the test:

  • 886 - The average dollar loss per Phishing Victim (Gartner, Dec 17, 2007)

  • 3.6 Billion - The total dollar loss of all phishing victims over a 1 year period (Gartner, Dec 17, 2007)

  • 3.2 Million - The number of people who fell victims to phishing scams over that same 1 year period (Gartner, Dec 17, 2007)

  • 8.5 Billion - The estimated number of phishing e-mails sent world-wide each month (SonicWALL, 2008)

  • 32,414 - The number of phishing web sites that were operational in May 2008 (Anti-Phishing Working Group)

  • 1,012,000 - The number of people who have taken the Phishing IQ Test worldwide

  • 7.4% - The percentage of test takers who get 100% - answering all 10 questions

  • 86% - The percentage of phishing e-mails that are identifies as 'phish' by the test takers

  • 57% - The percentage of legitimate e-mails that are identified as 'legitimate' by the test takers

Anything less than 10 out of 10 and you could be vulnerable...



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