Internet security software firm Sophos said it has analysed all the phishing e-mails received by its threat analysis centres around the world, and discovered that 54.3% of the messages were aiming to steal log-in and other details from PayPal users.
Sophos also found that 20.9% of messages were aimed at eBay users. eBay owns PayPal, which allows eBay users and others to make electronic payments.
Phishing e-mails are copycat messages made to look like they have been sent from genuine organisations.
They typically try to persuade users to click on a web link that leads to a fake website that looks like the real thing, such as the PayPal site.
Once at the fake site, users are encouraged to input their log-in details and personal information, which are then collected by fraudsters.
Graham Cluley, Sophos senior technology consultant, said, “The reason why the phishers focus so much on PayPal and eBay is because they are so popular around the world.”
He said, “PayPal and eBay have worked hard to educate and protect their customers from these kinds of attack, but the best solution is for computer users to become more savvy about securing their identity in the first place, and think before they click.”
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