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Phishers target Yahoo! Photos

Picture teaser tempts unwary

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

Updated Internet crooks looking to capture login details of Yahoo! accounts are changing tactics. Phishing attacks that attempt to capture a user's Yahoo! ID and password by tricking the gullible into handing over their credentials to fake sign-in pages have been around for months if not years. Recently, though, these phishing sites have begun using alternative Yahoo! Sign In pages, such as Yahoo! Photos, net security firm Websense reports.

Users typically receive an email or instant message that claims to be from a friend wanting to show off photos of a recent event, such as a vacation or a birthday party. The message contains a link to a phishing site, which records the user's Yahoo! ID and password, and then forwards the Yahoo! ID and password on to the real Yahoo! Photos site. What started off at a crude attack has evolved with the introduction of a more subtle form of social engineering attack.

Websense reports that the majority of these sites are hosted in the US on free web space provided by the Yahoo! Geocities service. A phishing screen shot example can be found here.

Yahoo! Photos users are advised to go the Yahoo! site itself rather than following links in suspicious-looking emails.

In a statement, Yahoo! said that phishing is an industry-wide issue which it treats very seriously. "When we learn about phishing sites, we remove them as quickly as possible. Yahoo! treats users' security as a top priority and continues to take a hard look at how to effectively combat phishing," it said. Users can report phishing issues at Yahoo! abuse here. The firm's security advice to consumers can be found here. ®

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