Cybercriminals Zoom in on Financial Services Industry in First Quarter of 2011

Established banks such as HSBC Holdings Plc; the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ); Lloyds TSB Bank Plc; Banco Santander, S.A.; and Western Union Bank made it to the top 10 list of cybercrime targets—for both email phishing and site-spoofing attacks.

 

As the industry celebrated the rise of Asia and mourned the tremendous damage and loss in Japan, cybercriminals seemed to be taking full advantage of the losses and gains this quarter. Key and easy targets however remained with the Banking and Financial sector and online transactions platforms.

 

The Trend Micro crimeware report for Q1 2011 has identified that 7 out of its top 10 list of cybercrime targets for Q1 2011 were banks and financial transactions platforms. The list includes established banks such as HSBC Holdings, Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ), Lloyds TSB Bank, Banco Santander, S.A., and Western Union Bank, along with sites like PayPal, eBay and Pharmacy Express in the top 10 list of cybercrime targets for both email phishing and site-spoofing attacks. The Top 10 list also includes platforms like Facebook and Yahoo!.

 

Changing lifestyles and the increasing information exchange on social media sites like Facebook and increasing financial transactions both on online and mobile platforms have been seen as the key vulnerability vectors.

 

Key malware incidents this quarter involved the notorious ZeuS malware and its over 10 variants that were used primarily as information stealing tools impacting mobile, email and social media platforms.

 

Trend Micro expects that cybercriminals will increasingly target mobile device users even more with the bypassing of two-factor authentication measures and targeting mobile devices. The fact that the majority of mobile online banking users still lack awareness of the threatsthis poses only increases the likelihood of such risks.

 

 

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