In short: Approximately 150 million of mobile fraud attacks have been recorded over the first six months of 2018, as per a new cybercrime report from ThreatMetrix published earlier today. Based on data from 17.6 billion digital transactions on the company's Digital Identity Network, 361 million cybercrime attempts have been detected and prevented over the observed period. More than a third of all hacking attacks aimed at smartphones and tablets now come in the form of mobile fraud and the prevalence of such criminal activities is likely to increase in the immediate future, the report indicates.
Background: With close to 60-percent of all digital transactions around the world now being conducted on mobile devices, hackers and scammers began pursuing traditional fraud more aggressively in recent years. While global attacks rose 24-percent compared to the first half of 2017, those in the United States increased at an even more rapid pace and are now some 44-percent more prevalent, according to the same study. Bots are also posing a major security issue in this day and age, with ThreatMetrix recording 2.6 billion bot attacks over the observed period, up 60-percent sequentially. The popularity of mobile scams is expected to continue rising moving forward due to the success rate of such attacks which is partially related to the effectiveness of identity spoofing on social networks.
The impact: All of the observed trends should continue generating momentum because unlike in-code security vulnerabilities, there's no universal protection against mobile fraud and consumers are highly advised to remain vigilant while making online payments, i.e. ensure they're sending their hard-earned money to the correct parties, in addition to monitoring their credit card activity on a regular basis, whether manually or automatically. The latter is of particular importance as the new report reveals the most common mobile fraud attempts recorded over the observed period came in the form of device spoofing that saw hackers try to trick banks into allowing them to log into other people's accounts. IP spoofing is another method that's becoming increasingly popular among mobile fraudsters, with cybersecurity companies being expected to pay extra attention to protecting users from such attacks moving forward.