Safe Internet League Launches Anti-Phishing Hotline

16
Jul

«Our hotline has seen 897 cases of phishing reported since summer began», announced Safe Internet League CEO Denis Davydov summing up the League anti-phishing hotline’s trial period.

Phishing is a type of online fraud aimed at obtaining confidential personal data (user names and passwords). Among its victims are usually bank and online payment services customers. Last autumn the Safe Internet League’s Board of Trustees decided to include combatting phishing in its operational scope. To this end, alongside the child pornography, illegal distribution of drugs, encouragement to suicide, and other types of illegal content hotlines, the League’s official web site had a new «Anti-Phishing» hotline set up at  www.ligainternet.ru/hotline/.

A trial period was announced, starting from June 2013, by the end of which the hotline had 897 reports submitted, with 37 addresses already blacklisted, 118 reports failing to meet the criteria, and further 742 cases under active investigation.

«Now that we have successfully tested the hotline and it is clear the whole system (from collecting the initial reports up to forwarding the data to hosting providers or law enforcement agencies) is operational, it is ready to get into full swing», declared Mr Davydov.

The hotline operates in the following way: the experts process online submissions, checking suspected web pages for «bugs» and collecting all the data about the web sites to then forward it to the authorities or the hosting providers. «The less time a phishing site remains online, the better. If a victim contacts the Safe Internet League right away and the web site is taken offline, it denies the fraudsters the possible gains to sustain their criminal network, and it fails to take off», explained Mr Davydov.
The Safe Internet League pursues its anti-phishing initiatives as part of its engagement with Russian Internet industry players and its standing cooperation with the K Department of the Interior Ministry, the agency handling all the data forwarded by League experts. Among the organizations providing the League with its expertise is Group-IB, one of the leading international companies specializing in preventing and investigating cybercrime and hi-tech fraud.

«The fact that the service is provided free of charge and that the law enforcement agencies are actively engaged in processing the submitted reports makes the Anti-Phishing Hotline a service unrivalled internationally», claims Group-IB founder and CEO Ilya Satchkov. «Each day cybersecurity specialists have to take down scores of Russian-based malware web sites, but even our utmost efforts fail to stem this criminal tide. To stop this cat-and-mouse game the legislators need to criminalize the creation and distribution of malware. If instead of just having his web site taken offline a perpetrator actually gets prosecuted, he won’t simply go and put up another one. That is the rationale behind the Anti-Phishing Hotline».