Global Phishing Attacks Continue to Dramatically Grow

Global Phishing Attacks Continue to Dramatically Grow

Zscaler, Inc. recently released the findings of its 2022 ThreatLabz Phishing Report that reviews 12 months of global phishing data from the Zscaler security cloud to identify key trends, industries and geographies at risk, and emerging tactics. According to the FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3), phishing attempts are the most frequently-reported cyberattack.

Zscaler’s ThreatLabz research team analyzed data from more than 200 billion daily transactions, and 150 million daily blocked attacks in order to identify emerging threats and track malicious actors from across the globe. This year’s report showed dramatic 29% growth in overall phishing attacks compared to previous years, with retail and wholesale companies bearing the brunt of the increase. The report also showed an emerging reliance on phishing-as-a-service methods, as well as new attack vectors, such as SMS phishing, becoming one of the more prevalent methods of intrusion.

“Phishing attacks are impacting businesses and consumers with alarming frequency, complexity, and scope - with the rise in phishing-as-a-service making it easier than ever for non-sophisticated actors to launch successful attacks. Our annual report highlights how cybercriminals continue to escalate their usage of phishing as a starting point to breach organizations to deliver ransomware or steal sensitive data,” said Deepen Desai, CISO and VP of Security Research and Operations at Zscaler. “To defend against advanced phishing attacks, organizations must leverage a multi-pronged defensive strategy anchored on a cloud native zero trust platform that unifies full SSL inspection with AI/ML-powered detection to stop the most sophisticated phishing attempts and phishing kits, lateral movement prevention and integrated deception to limit the blast radius of a compromised user, proactive controls to block high risk destinations such as newly registered domains that are often abused by threat actors, and in-line DLP to safeguard against data theft.”

Phishing has always been one of the most pervasive cyberthreats, with various methods used to steal private information. One of the reasons this type of attack grows in prevalence every year is its low barrier to entry. Cybercriminals use current events, such as the COVID-19 pandemic or cryptocurrency, to convince unwitting victims to hand over confidential data, such as passwords, credit card information, and login credentials. 

The 2022 ThreatLabz Phishing Report found that phishing attacks lure victims by posing as top brands or promoting topical events. The top phishing themes in 2021 included categories such as productivity tools, illegal streaming sites, shopping sites, social media platforms, financial institutions, and logistical services.

In 2021, the U.S. was the most-targeted country globally, accounting for over 60% of all phishing attacks blocked by the Zscaler security cloud. The next most frequently attacked countries include Singapore, Germany, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom.

 

Not all countries experienced the same attention from phishing attacks. For example, the Netherlands experienced a decrease of 38 %, which may have resulted from recently-passed legislation that increased the penalties for online fraud.

Phishing attacks were also not evenly distributed across different industries. Retail and wholesale businesses experienced an increase of over 400% in phishing attempts - the most out of all tracked industries. These businesses were followed by financial and government sectors, with organizations in these industries seeing over 100% increases in attacks on average. However, some industries experienced partial relief from phishing attacks last year. Healthcare saw a notable drop of 59 %, while the services industry saw a decline of 33 %.

Featured

  • Maximizing Your Security Budget This Year

    7 Ways You Can Secure a High-Traffic Commercial Security Gate  

    Your commercial security gate is one of your most powerful tools to keep thieves off your property. Without a security gate, your commercial perimeter security plan is all for nothing. Read Now

  • Busy South Africa Building Integrates Custom Access Control System

    Nicol Corner, based in Bedfordview, Johannesburg, South Africa, is home to a six-star fitness club, prime office space, and an award-winning rooftop restaurant. This is the first building in South Africa to have its glass façade fully incorporate fritted glazing, saving 35% on energy consumption. Nicol Corner (Pty) LTD has developed a landmark with sophisticated design and unique architecture by collaborating with industry-leading partners and specifying world-class equipment throughout the project. This includes installing a high-spec, bespoke security and access control system. Read Now

  • Only 13 Percent of Research Institutions Are Prepared for AI

    A new survey commissioned by SHI International and Dell Technologies underscores the transformative potential of artificial intelligence (AI) while exposing significant gaps in preparedness at many research institutions. Read Now

  • Survey: 70 Percent of Organizations Have Established Dedicated SaaS Security Teams

    Seventy percent of organizations have prioritized investment in SaaS security, establishing dedicated SaaS security teams, despite economic uncertainty and workforce reductions. This was a key finding in the fourth Annual SaaS Security Survey Report: 2025 CISO Plans and Priorities released today by the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA), the world’s leading organization dedicated to defining standards, certifications, and best practices to help ensure a secure cloud computing environment. Read Now

Featured Cybersecurity

Webinars

New Products

  • Luma x20

    Luma x20

    Snap One has announced its popular Luma x20 family of surveillance products now offers even greater security and privacy for home and business owners across the globe by giving them full control over integrators’ system access to view live and recorded video. According to Snap One Product Manager Derek Webb, the new “customer handoff” feature provides enhanced user control after initial installation, allowing the owners to have total privacy while also making it easy to reinstate integrator access when maintenance or assistance is required. This new feature is now available to all Luma x20 users globally. “The Luma x20 family of surveillance solutions provides excellent image and audio capture, and with the new customer handoff feature, it now offers absolute privacy for camera feeds and recordings,” Webb said. “With notifications and integrator access controlled through the powerful OvrC remote system management platform, it’s easy for integrators to give their clients full control of their footage and then to get temporary access from the client for any troubleshooting needs.” 3

  • Mobile Safe Shield

    Mobile Safe Shield

    SafeWood Designs, Inc., a manufacturer of patented bullet resistant products, is excited to announce the launch of the Mobile Safe Shield. The Mobile Safe Shield is a moveable bullet resistant shield that provides protection in the event of an assailant and supplies cover in the event of an active shooter. With a heavy-duty steel frame, quality castor wheels, and bullet resistant core, the Mobile Safe Shield is a perfect addition to any guard station, security desks, courthouses, police stations, schools, office spaces and more. The Mobile Safe Shield is incredibly customizable. Bullet resistant materials are available in UL 752 Levels 1 through 8 and include glass, white board, tack board, veneer, and plastic laminate. Flexibility in bullet resistant materials allows for the Mobile Safe Shield to blend more with current interior décor for a seamless design aesthetic. Optional custom paint colors are also available for the steel frame. 3

  • Compact IP Video Intercom

    Viking’s X-205 Series of intercoms provide HD IP video and two-way voice communication - all wrapped up in an attractive compact chassis. 3