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Kaspersky Says Cybercrime Rising with Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa Worst Hit 

Kaspersky released a report saying cybercrime is rising with Nigeria, Kenya, and South Africa worst hit with phishing scams.

 

Kaspersky has said that cybercrime is rising with Nigeria, Kenya, and South Africa being the worst hit. The report says that phishing and scams rose to a record 438 percent in Nigeria, and 174 percent in Kenya.

 

The analysis which was released yesterday indicated that data loss threats (related to phishing and scams/social engineering) increased significantly in Africa in Q2 2022 compared with 2021 as the company's security solutions detected 10,722,886 phishing attacks in Africa in Q2.

 

In this age where humans have been conditioned to make online digital transactions, Kaspersky pointed out that social engineering is taking place at scale, and what may be termed, "human hacking" scams are becoming widespread luring unwary users to dangerous websites and tricking them to volunteer personal information such as financial credentials like passwords or payment card details. In other cases, it could be login details for social media accounts.

 

Understanding some of the new sophisticated ways these scammers employ and taking measures to guard against compromising your security online is important.

 

Firstly, what is phishing?

 

Phishing describes a type of social engineering attack deployed for the sole purpose of stealing user data, like login credentials and credit card numbers. Phishing occurs when an attacker, disguises as a trusted entity(profile, websites, etc) to dupe a victim into opening an email, instant message, or text message.

 

The report mentioned some of the tricks in the book Phishers deploy nowadays. Phishers use different methods to bypass email blocking which allows them to lure many to their fraudulent sites. One common technique is the use of HTML attachments with partially or fully hidden code. With HTML codes, it is easier for attackers to hide scripts and other malicious content which are difficult to detect, thereby sending phishing web pages as attachments instead of links.

 

The most vulnerable group by Kaspersky's assessment are travelers, who are looking for interesting and cheaper holiday destinations as well as reasonably priced flights.

 

According to the report, Kaspersky researchers observed intensified scamming activities, with disguised websites of airlines and booking services used for phishing. The number of attempts to open phishing pages related to booking and airline services in the first half of 2022 was 4,311 in the Middle East, Turkey, and Africa (META) region.

 

What you should do to avoid becoming a victim of phishing scams?

 

Kaspersky experts recommend taking a careful look at the website URLs before entering any sensitive information, "such as your login details and password. If something is wrong with the URL (i.e., spelling, it doesn’t look like the original or it uses some special symbols instead of letters) don’t enter anything on the site. If in doubt, check the certificate of the site by clicking on the lock icon to the left of the URL.

"Not clicking on links that come from unknown sources (either through e-mails, messaging apps, or social networks).

"Visiting the business’ official website if you see a giveaway offered in an e-mail or on social media by a travel agency or an airline, to confirm the giveaway exists. You should also carefully check the links the giveaway ad leads you to."