Feeds

German finance ministry tags fraudsters’ phishing form

Achtung

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

The German Ministry of Finance has applied some lateral thinking in order to warn potential victims of a new phishing campaign.

Fraudulent tax refund emails doing the rounds in Germany seek to con marks into handing over sensitive information in order to claim a tax refund. The scam email uses images pulled from the genuine German Ministry of Finance in order to lend authenticity to the scam.

In response, the ministry have changed the images, with tagged photos warning potential marks that something was amiss, a far more effective warning approach than the standard tactic of posting a warning notice on the site.

Local security firm G-Data parsed the ministry's tactics as "a clever initiative to spread a genuine warning within a fake data submission form", in an advisory containing screenshots and more detail on the scam on its site here.

Phishers might change tactics to avoid including images from sites they are attempting to impersonate if this sort of countermeasure takes off but that would make convincing scams more time-consuming and difficult to create, no bad thing in itself.

The German Ministry of Finance doesn't even handle tax refunds, the job of local tax offices in Germany. That and the poor grammar in the scam emails probably meant few locals would be taken in by the ruse. For those few that slipped through the net, the changes to the pictures made on its site by the German Ministry of Finance might have cut the number of victims even further. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
14 antivirus apps found to have security problems
Vendors just don't care, says researcher, after finding basic boo-boos in security software
'Things' on the Internet-of-things have 25 vulnerabilities apiece
Leaking sprinklers, overheated thermostats and picked locks all online
iWallet: No BONKING PLEASE, we're Apple
BLE-ding iPhones, not NFC bonkers, will drive trend - marketeers
Only '3% of web servers in top corps' fully fixed after Heartbleed snafu
Just slapping a patched OpenSSL on a machine ain't going to cut it, we're told
How long is too long to wait for a security fix?
Synology finally patches OpenSSL bugs in Trevor's NAS
Israel's Iron Dome missile tech stolen by Chinese hackers
Corporate raiders Comment Crew fingered for attacks
Tor attack nodes RIPPED MASKS off users for 6 MONTHS
Traffic confirmation attack bared users' privates - but to whom?
Roll out the welcome mat to hackers and crackers
Security chap pens guide to bug bounty programs that won't fail like Yahoo!'s
Researcher sat on critical IE bugs for THREE YEARS
VUPEN waited for Pwn2Own cash while IE's sandbox leaked
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.