Phish Like the Pros

Ever wonder if hackers sit around talking about phishing expeditions and the “big one” that got away? The big one, of course, being a huge cache of sensitive data.

According to research from Proofpoint, those conversations probably don’t happen nearly as often as they should. That’s because 75% of organizations around the world experienced a phishing attack in 2020, and nearly 75% of attacks aimed at US businesses were successful. Sadly, not many actually get away.

What makes this stat even more concerning is the same report found that 95% of organizations claim to deliver phishing awareness training to their employees. That tells me the training isn’t being validated with the type of rigorous testing it takes to make sure it’s working.

To make sure we’re all clear on terminology, phishing is the practice of sending emails pretending to be from reputable companies or people in order to entice an individual to reveal information such as passwords or sensitive data. Verizon’s 2020 Data Breach Investigations Report found that phishing was the second-leading threat action behind security incidents and the top activity that led to data breaches.

As a lead penetration tester at Raxis, I work with our clients to figure out what type of test they need, and then I customize a phishing attack designed to trick their employees and even their spam and virus filters, depending on the scope. Just like the blackhats, I’ll use any trick I can to get employees to give me their credentials or click on a malicious link. Unlike my unethical counterparts, however, all my phishing is catch-and-release.

In today’s video, I share some of my favorite tips and tricks for phishing assessments. The reason I’m happy to show you how is because, the more realistic the testing, the better prepared companies are when the bad guys come calling.

Phishing attacks are a significant threat to all organizations, no matter the size. It is important that members in your organization are up to date on security training, know how to spot the most common phishing scams, and understand the safeguards in place to help protect them and the company.

Raxis offers a variety of cybersecurity services, such as penetration testing, red team assessments, and other ethical hacking solutions, to help companies take a proactive approach to improve their security posture. 

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