More Than 400 Phishing Attacks in March

Phishing attacks jumped 43 percent in March with 402 unique scams, according to monthly data from the Anti-Phishing Working Group. The total again marked a new record, easily topping February's 282 attacks. Activity increased throughout the March, peaking with 94 attacks in the final four days of the month - nearly 24 campaigns per day.

March saw a substantial increase in attacks on Citibank, which was the target in 98 scams, up from 58 in March. eBay properties remained the top target for phishers, with 110 attacks targeting its eBay auction site, while another 63 targeted its PayPal payment subsidiary. Fleet Bank seems to have moved onto phishers' radar as well, being targeted by 23 attacks in March, up from just two in January. Britain's Barclays (11), America Online (10) and Australia's WestPac (10) were among other favored targets.

Phishing attacks seek to trick account holders into divulging sensitive account information through the use of e-mails which appear to come from trusted financial institutions and retailers.

Netcraft has developed a service to help banks and other financial organizations identify sites which may be trying to construct frauds, identity theft and phishing attacks by pretending to be the bank, or are implying that the site has a relationship with the bank when in fact there is none.