What is phishing?
- Phishing is a cybercrime in which a target or targets are contacted by email, telephone or text message by someone posing as a legitimate institution to lure individuals into providing sensitive data such as personally identifiable information, banking and credit card details, and passwords.
- The information is then used to access important accounts and can result in identity theft and financial loss.
The common purposes of Phishing
- Financial Access
- Identity theft
- Installing malware – virus, worm, trojan horse, spyware, ransomware
- Spreading misinformation and disinformation
- Psychological Warfare
- Sexual exploitation of minors
Phishing and India
- About Rs 195 crore, totalling 2,678 cases, was lost in frauds related to cards and internet banking in 2019-2020, as against Rs 71 crore (1,866 cases) reported a year ago, according to the RBI data.
- Recently, India’s official cybersecurity agency CERT-in warned of a large-scale cyber-attack targeting 2 million individual email IDs belonging to users in India.
- The warning is based on the activities of the notorious North Korea backed cybercrime group- Lazarus Group. The attackers planned to send fake emails, social media posts or text messages related to COVID-19 to the targets, in order to steal their credentials, financial information or compromise their computers.
Concerned laws in India
- Information Technology Act (IT Act) 2000
- Information Technology Act (Amendment) 2008 – It empowers the Indian government to intercept, monitor and decrypt computer systems, resources and communication devices.
- National Cyber Security Strategy 2020
- The Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-in) as the nodal agency for coordination of all cyber security efforts, emergency responses, and crisis management
- e-BAAT (Electronic Banking Awareness And Training) programmes by RBI
- Organising campaigns on safe use of digital payment modes
Why in News?
- A library movement developed in a short span of time in Jharkhand’s Jamtara district is receiving a steady flow of students and helping them reduce phishing activities.
- The district’s love for books assumes huge significance as it has the dubious distinction of being the “phishing capital of India”. Many youth, mostly drop-outs in the 15-35 years age group, have been turning to cybercrime to earn a few quick bucks.
- Studies of students preparing for Class X and Class XII exams were disrupted during the COVID-19 infection period. But the community library proved to be a boon for such students. The State government is conducting classes for mathematics and science at these campuses..
- Earlier, the Jamtara police administration had launched an IEC (information education communication) campaign educating cyber fraudsters and warning them about the repercussions of being caught.
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