Could Phishing Expeditions Stop Cold with Deeper Insight?

VoIP, Partners, SMB Solutions, call center, certification, voip services, voip equipment, Media Processing, hardware, middleware, opensource, SIP, SBC, Wireless, ims, Triple Play, Switching, VoIP Peering, regulation

PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED TO TMC NET SECURITY

Easy Solutions, a fraud protection company, recently did some research into phishing attacks against a Top 25 US Bank during a three-month period. From September of 2015 until December, it seems these “phishermen” were quite busy. What’s most alarming is that these attacks were done during a season that leaves us most vulnerable to attack and where many of us won’t even realize that have been a victim until much later on.

During such a busy time in commerce, many of us won’t even know we were victims until much later down the road. This next bit of information might tell us why.

Easy Solutions broke down over 3,030 cases at just that one bank. What’s most interesting about this finding is that in each case, the common denominator was that each instance targeted around 190 people on average.

If we factor in how many banks there are – not just in the United States, but all over the world – and consider that this is a yearlong plague, we start to see the bigger picture.

Easy Solutions grouped the attacks into three main categories. Parameters were based on how sites were created as well as whether or not the domains are registered – including the domain provider and the location of each server.

The company decided that many of these sites were created as traps, only meant to serve a few stragglers at a time.  These people would accidently stumble upon the site or be directed there through some other devious means. And, it has been proving successful.

Each group of sites were then broken down. Location was a big factor in the next step of the process. Other factors were Whois information, the types of phishkits used and the strategy for getting people to the site.

Daniel Ingevaldson, CTO of Easy Solutions, states, “When institutions can more effectively characterize their attackers, they can then more successfully combat phishing attacks – by tuning consumer education campaigns, changing web site countermeasures, or adjusting risk scoring during phishing campaigns.”

Armed with new information, consumers can better differentiate between a genuine source and a scam. They will know which sites to stay away from, and gain confidence in those that they trust.

In a day where we are including our entire business on a cloud platform, there are still many that refuse to use their credit card online for these purposes. Institutions, such as the IRS, PayPal (NewsAlert) and Bank of America, are repeat victims of fraud. Customers and those who aren’t even affiliated with the organizations are often tricked through scare tactics and extortion strategies.

By understanding the source, it’s easier to shut fraud down – one scammer at a time. By better understanding domains and locations that are frequently associated with this fraud, it’s easier to pinpoint all source of fraud on a regular basis… stopping it cold in its own tracks. 

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Linux Foundation Executive Details 5 Virtual Networking Predictions for 2016

NFV Essentials, Network Service Orchestration, Network Function Virtualization, NFV, Network Function Virtualization Management, Network Function Virtualization Management and Orchestration, Network Orchestration, NFV Orchestration, Session Border Controller, SBC, Virtualized Network Functions, VNF, VNF Managers, Applications Orchestrator, Converged Applications Server, Communications Services Gatekeeper,Virtual Infrastructure Managers, VIMs, Communications Policy Management, VoLTE, IMS, and Virtualization

PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED ON TMCNET’S NFV ESSENTIALS SITE

Open source projects have always been in demand, but they have become even more so since our top technologies have allowed for more integration, as opposed to previous “as is” programming. That said, we are seeing one of the biggest growths for open source software development in the area of Networking. Here, network functions virtualization (NFV) is allowing networking to be transformed and is being impacted by open source projects at record speed.

As Heather Kirskey, Director of NFV for OPNFV, the Linux Foundation, in a recent blog provides five virtual networking trends to keep an eye on in 2016 as the pace of virtualization innovation really is accelerating.  In fact, Kirskey cites a recent report by the researchers at IHS Infonetics who are forecasting a fivefold increase in the NFV/SDN market by 2019 with more than $11B in revenue.

Plus, it is noted that when it comes to NFV, activities are moving beyond telecommunications. The Linux Foundation is deeply involved in accelerating NFV having created a collaborative project over a year ago to fan the innovation flames. They launched a “carrier-grated, integrated, open source platform” aimed at accelerating the innovation of new products and services from over 56 separate companies who have come together in the Open Platform for Network Functions Visualization (OPNFV) project. It plans a second, more evolved launch later this year with increased functionality, testing and interoperability.

Kirskey provided five predictions regarding this substantial infrastructure technology shift.

Her first prediction is that “containers become a key technology component in any NFV platform.” She sees it changing how we uses guest operations in virtual machines, because we will now be using applications instead of actual containers. This will provide easier to use – yet customizable – solutions to previous container features. This usually means that more will get done in a shorter amount of time. And, who doesn’t love productivity?

Next on the list is that “NFV” and “SDN” will be the top skill sets amongst telecom job seekers.” She feels that this shift in virtualization will not only impact how we use technology but also how we hire for technology. As explained, productivity is a key driver going forward.  Many organizations will most likely work to either integrate better virtual functions through networking, or they will simply switch over completely. This will mean expertise on how to optimize new capabilities will be at a premium.  

Third, Kirskey is looking at the first round of limited production deployments in OPNFVs beta stage tol go live. This is exciting on its own, because it is estimated that over 38 new products are getting ready for release. And, with implementation will come the use cases where ROIs become validated.

Fourth on the list is that with the new releases we are going to see the first non-telecommunications end users. And, OPNFV as a result will begin to see diversity in membership.

Finally, Kirskey predicts that an even higher caliber of NFV-related service outages will occur. This will be the “signaling of a turning point in adoption.” New issues will manifest, as several new audiences begin to access and manipulate the programming. These are what Kirskey characterizes as unfortunate but predictable “growing pains” which according to her are a “silver lining,” the logic being that any large scale outage signals that the technology is maturing.

The good news is that despite the last point about bumps on the road, realities are that the silver lining assessment is not off base.  NFV is maturing quickly, the results are going to become readily apparent in the not too distant future and open source solutions are going to be the fuel that keeps the engines of innovation and deployment running optimally.

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