Saturday, December 2, 2023

Phishing and Keylogging Major Threats to Google Accounts Security

Phishing and Keylogging are one of the most common problems for Internet Users, hackers find a new innovative method to create believable URL’s to trick users. According to Google research, more than 15% accounts hijacked by using these social engineering methods.

Google teamed up with the University of California Berkeley for the better understanding of how account hijacks occur in wild and the survey conducted between the period of March 2016 to March 2017.

They found 788,000 potential victims of off-the-shelf keyloggers; 12.4 million potential victims of phishing kits; and 1.9 billion usernames and passwords exposed via data breaches and traded on black market forums.

Also, they identified 4,069 distinct phishing kits and 52 keyloggers that are responsible for the attack and the most popular keylogger used by Blackhat hackers is HawkEye. You read the full research paper here.

Source: Google

Malicious websites available everywhere over the Internet, it is very difficult to find a trustworthy website. We need to browse smart and need to make sure the site is not dangerous by using Multiple approaches.

In general, it is good to type the website URL instead of copy paste or clicking an URL. Also, check to see the website working with HTTP OR HTTPS.

Read to deploy phishing kits are available in a number of hacker forums with inbuilt support for reporting credentials to the operator.And the same scenario for keyloggers.

Gao et al. identified 57,000 Facebook accounts that created 200,000 spam posts; they estimated 97% of the accounts were in fact compromised.

Incase of an data breach around 12% of excluded records includes google Email addresss and 7% of passwords can be resued.So attackers prime target over Google account and the sucess percentage varies 12-25%.

Their entire dataset now included 1,092,567,042 credential leak victims, 3,779,664 phishing victims, and 2,992 keylogger victims.

Source: Google
We evaluate the likelihood a user falls victim to hijacking given they appear in our dataset of stolen credentials. In order to mitigate the risk of exposed passwords, Google blocks or requires additional authentication information when a login falls outside a user’s risk profile encapsulates a user’s historical access patterns, known devices, and known locations.

They found 82% of blackhat phishing tools and 74% of keyloggers attempted to collect a user’s IP address and location, while another 18% of tools collected phone numbers and device make and model.


Google said with their findings they must evolve their defenses in order to stay ahead of bad actors and keep users safe.Our findings illustrate that despite significant research in the space, Internet users continue to fall victim to the same threats.

Immediate solutions to the shortcomings of risk profiles include migrating users to unphishable two-factor authentication (2FA) or password managers that associate credentials with specific domains.


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