Escape the phishing net

The company that claims to have discovered 5,600 fraudulent web sites since last December, Netcraft, has launched an anti-phishing tool that users can plug-in to Internet Explorer to better protect their data.

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By  Chris Fernando Published  May 4, 2005

The company that claims to have discovered 5,600 fraudulent web sites since last December, Netcraft, has launched an anti-phishing tool that users can plug-in to Internet Explorer to better protect their data. Netcraft’s toolbar blocks known phishing sites and displays a ‘Risk Rating’ for all new sites it encounters. The Risk Rating is a user-friendly visual summary of the information displayed by the toolbar, and evaluates new sites against characteristics of the phishing sites reported to date. Sites that are deemed safe will show a low risk rating, while riskier sites will show higher ratings, based on factors such as the number of pop-ups initiated by a site and the host of the web site. The Netcraft toolbar also reveals where a site is hosted, shows its true net address, and notes if other fraudulent sites are hosted at the same address. Users can also help Netcraft track a phishing site; if a user feels the site he is accessing is bogus, this can be reported via the Netcraft toolbar. Netcraft relies on a large network of volunteers, many of whom work in security companies, to generate a list of bogus sites from the e-mail messages they receive. According to a list of the phishiest countries compiled by Netcraft, most phishing e-mails originate from Taiwan, South Korea and China. The Netcraft toolbar can be downloaded for free from http://toolbar.netcraft.com. Similar toolbars are also available from companies such as Geotrust, Cloudmark, Comodo, Phaseout and Phishing.net. Netcraft is also working on a similar tool for Mozilla’s Firefox browser.

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