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South Korea is World's Largest Phisher

China, Russia, Taiwan Also Big on Netcraft "Phishiest Sites" Survey

South Korea, Russia, China, and Taiwan emerge as the primary hosters of global "phishing" scams, according to statistics from UK-based Netcraft. The company, which conducts Internet and Worldwide Web research and offers security services, has compiled a list of the "phishiest countries," identifying known phishing websites and comparing that number with the number of known websites hosted overall in each country.

South Korea is listed as having 877 phishing sites. Almost 10% of all known phishing sites in the world are located in South Korea, according to the Netcraft statistics. Othe countries among the leaders of this dubious list include China (521), Taiwan (336), and the Russian Federation (306). Other countries with more than 100 phishing sites, according to Netcraft, include: Hong Kong (150), Romania (149), and India (124).

On a percentage basis, Cameroon emerges as the "winner," albeit with only one phishing site among the only 55 total sites hosted in the country, giving it a phishing ratio of 1 in 55. Major phishing countries with leading ratios include Taiwan (1 in 241 of all hosted websites are phishing sites), Romania (1 in 292), Thailand (1 in 889), and India (1 in 905).

South Korea has only 1 phishing site per 1,132 total. So the numbers show that even when a country can state than 99.9% of its websites are legitimate that it can still have a problem of too many phishing websites. The Netcraft statistics list the top 50 "phishiest" countries. Neither the U.S. or Canada, nor any countries in Western Europe were on this list.

So-called "phishing" scams, in which unsolicited e-mails warn of a problem with an account at a bank or stored-value company such as PayPal, are one of the true banes of today's Worldwide Web. These scams are designed to extract personal information, including social security numbers and account information, with the presumed intent to resell that information or use it to loot funds from said accounts.

Phishing scams are often quite sophisticated, with well-written calls to action and links to URLs that appear valid. Given the incredibly low cost of sending out unsolicited messages on the Internet, these scams can prosper with response rates of less than .01 percent. And it is practically impossible to prosecute the perpetrators of these scams due to a lack of specific laws against many aspects of this activity and the worldwide, dispersed location of the servers from which they are hosted.





More Stories By Jeremy Geelan

Jeremy Geelan is Chairman & CEO of the 21st Century Internet Group, Inc. and an Executive Academy Member of the International Academy of Digital Arts & Sciences. Formerly he was President & COO at Cloud Expo, Inc. and Conference Chair of the worldwide Cloud Expo series. He appears regularly at conferences and trade shows, speaking to technology audiences across six continents. You can follow him on twitter: @jg21.

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ISSJ News Desk 06/25/05 12:14:54 PM EDT

South Korea is World's Largest Phisher. South Korea is listed as having 877 phishing sites. Almost 10% of all known phishing sites in the world are located in South Korea, according to the Netcraft statistics. Othe countries among the leaders of this dubious list include China (521), Taiwan (336), and the Russian Federation (306). Other countries with more than 100 phishing sites, according to Netcraft, include: Hong Kong (150), Romania (149), and India (124).

On a percentage basis, Cameroon emerges as the "winner," albeit with only one phishing site among the only 55 total sites hosted in the country, giving it a phishing ratio of 1 in 55. Major phishing countries with leading ratios include Taiwan (1 in 241 of all hosted websites are phishing sites), Romania (1 in 292), Thailand (1 in 889), and India (1 in 905).

South Korea has only 1 phishing site per 1,132 total. So the numbers show that even when a country can state than 99.9% of its websites are legitimate that it can still have a problem of too many phishing websites. The Netcraft statistics list the top 50 "phishiest" countries. Neither the U.S. or Canada, nor any countries in Western Europe were on this list.

So-called "phishing" scams, in which unsolicited e-mails warn of a problem with an account at a bank or stored-value company such as PayPal, are one of the true banes of today's Worldwide Web. These scams are designed to extract personal information, including social security numbers and account information, with the presumed intent to resell that information or use it to loot funds from said accounts.

Phishing scams are often quite sophisticated, with well-written calls to action and links to URLs that appear valid. Given the incredibly low cost of sending out unsolicited messages on the Internet, these scams can prosper with response rates of less than .01 percent. And it is practically impossible to prosecute the perpetrators of these scams due to a lack of specific laws against many aspects of this activity and the worldwide, dispersed location of the servers from which they are hosted.