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BizReport : Mobile Marketing : April 10, 2018

Report: Phishers going mobile

Fraudulent purchases, stealing identities. These are only two of the things phishers are after. And, according to new data, they're using mobile devices to get the data, not only of consumers but potentially of businesses whose employees use mobile devices for work.

by Kristina Knight

Mobile devices are a new target for phishers. That's the word from new Lookout data, which shows phishing attacks coming from mobile URLs increased 85% YoY, and what may be even more dangers, about half of Lookout users clicked on phishing URLs which had gone around existing security controls.

The problem is that these phishers are hiding or masking their URLs on mobile devices, making them look as if they are from legitimate businesses - some of which these consumers may use on a regular basis. And, they aren't just in email - phishers are using SMS and messaging apps and are personalizing some of the content they push to unaware consumers.

For these reasons, Lookout's experts think it's key for brands, merchants, and other businesses to up their security protections.

"It's critical for enterprises to realize that when it comes to mobile devices, email is not the only phishing attack vector," said Aaron Cockerill, Chief Strategy Officer, Lookout. "Attackers now take advantage of SMS, as well as some of today's most popular and highly used social media apps and messaging platforms, such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Instagram, as a means of phishing. Security professionals who overlook these new routes of attack put their organizations at risk."

Some interesting takeaways from the report include:

• 56% of Lookout users received and clicked on phishing URLs on their mobile devices
• 25% of one brand's employees clicked on an SMS message spoofed to look like it came from their area

"Mobile devices have eroded the corporate perimeter, limiting the effectiveness of traditional network security solutions like firewalls and secure web gateways," said Cockerill. "Operating outside the perimeter and freely accessing not just enterprise apps and SaaS, but also personal services like social media and email, mobile devices are rich targets for attack since they may lack enterprise security, but enable enterprise access and authentication."

The full Lookout report can be found here

Tags: advertising, Lookout, mobile fraud, mobile marketing, mobile phishing, phishing trends

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