There has been a reduction in the number of phishing attacks recorded and blocked by Kaspersky (www.Africa.Kaspersky.com) in South Africa (down 17%), Kenya (down 48%) and Nigeria ( 13% decrease) for the first half of this year compared to the same period in 2020. As the decline suggests and supports research trends – that cybercriminals have become more targeted, focusing their efforts on advanced campaigns Persistent Threat (APT) in Africa – the threat of phishing is still widespread, says Kaspersky.
“This decrease is in line with global trends and supports the decline that Kaspersky research has identified over the past year already. Of course, this does not mean that organizations and consumers can ignore the risk of traditional cybercrime attacks or that phishing, as well as spam, is still not a major concern in Africa. Instead, people need to become even more aware of cybersecurity best practices and remain vigilant to protect their personal and work systems from the risk of compromise, ”says Bethwel Opil, Head of Corporate Sales at Kaspersky in Africa .
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For example, spam accounted for almost 30% of email traffic in South Africa and almost 35% in Kenya in the first half of 2021. The number of registered phishing attacks in South Africa for the first half of 2021 has exceeded million to 1,031,006. In Kenya Phishing attacks were recorded at 601,557 and in Nigeria at 393,569. Reaching over two million combined attacks underscores that phishing is still a significant threat in Africa and illustrates the importance of ensuring that cybersecurity solutions are installed on all connected devices.
“Phishing and spam remain among the most effective ways to target unsuspecting users and gain access to company systems or compromise personal and other financial information that can be used to commit identity theft. », Explains Opil.
Phishing attacks across the continent have prompted unsuspecting victims to hand over banking information, identification numbers, and more. Cybercriminals have become even more savvy with their tactics, adopting more sophisticated technology to trick people into clicking things they shouldn’t. For example, the deployment of the COVID-19 vaccine across Africa has given rise to plenty of opportunities for cybercriminals to carry out multiple attacks that are hidden in what at first glance may appear to be relevant information.
In addition to installing relevant cybersecurity solutions, individuals and businesses should consider the following tips to protect against spam and phishing:
- Use multiple email addresses. One can be used for personal correspondence while another can be used for online shopping or social media.
- Never respond to any spam. Malicious users verify receipt and log responses from active email addresses.
- Always check the link before clicking – make sure the links start with https: // and not http: //.
- Don’t rush or panic – crooks use such tactics to force you to click on links or open attachments.
- Keep your browser and operating system up to date with the latest fixes.
- Use spam filters to complement antivirus and internet security solutions.
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