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As German cybercrime soars, Finjan warns UK firms to beware

October 2009 by Finjan

Reports from Germany suggest that almost half of all Internet users have been victims of online crime and, says Finjan, a leader in secure web gateway products and the provider of unified web security solutions, British companies should review and reinforce their IT security defences against a similar surge in e-crime taking place in the UK.

"The report from Bitkom, the German business IT association, noted an increase in Internet crime largely as a result of concerned efforts on the part of criminal gangs using trojan-enabled phishing attacks," said Yuval Ben-Itzhak, Finjan’s chief technology officer. "This trend reflects our own observations here at Finjan" he added.

According to Ben-Itzhak, in Finjan’s just-issued Cybercrime Intelligence Report ( Finjan’s researchers found that online thieves are getting craftier at covering their tracks to go undetected for longer stretches of time.

In the report, Finjan noted that cybercriminals are using Trojans - such as the URLzone bank Trojan, as well as new anti-fraud detection tactics - to side-step rapid identification of the crime by both banking customers and the banks themselves.

Ben-Itzhak explained that, unlike previous online attacks on bank accounts, the thieves that Finjan studied using the URLzone Trojan to attack German banking customers actually hid the resultant fraudulent transactions from the victims.

They did this, he says, by manipulating the account statement information that is displayed on the customer’s screen.

"Bitkom’s figures confirm our own observations that the problem of online cybercrime is reaching unprecedented levels, as the criminal gangs behind these frauds get more and more clever," he said.

"Against this backdrop we would urge any company wanting to use the Internet for online banking - or any similar financial services - to ensure their IT security defences are both up to date and multi-layered. Only then can they access the Internet securely," he added.

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