Microsoft is bolstering the anti-phishing capabilities of its products by signing up three companies to help update its filtering technology.
Phishing is where remote attackers try to dupe internet users to provide sensitive information such as log-in details or online banking details with the aim of committing fraud.
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Such phishing threats come through rogue e-mails or fake websites designed to look like genuine sites.
Microsoft is using three companies to provide anti-phishing security to its MSN Search toolbar, the Smartscreen e-mail filter and its forthcoming Internet Explorer 7 browser.
Cyota, MarkMonitor and Internet Identity are being used to bolster Microsoft's anti-phishing filters to protect these products.
They are providing data to Microsoft to enable the company to prevent existing and emerging phishing threats.
The Smartscreen e-mail filter protects Microsoft's Hotmail e-mail service, the Windows Live Mail beta and Microsoft's Outlook and Exchange e-mail software.
Internet Explorer 7 is now in limited beta and will be released next year to work with the Windows Vista operating system, which is due for release in late 2006. It will also be available to users of Windows XP Service Pack 2.