Microsoft was the number one brand spoofed by cybercriminals in Q2 2018

Just in from Vade SecureNot all hackers are Nigerian Princes. Some pretend to be PayPal. Others are imitating Facebook. But, according to new research from Vade, which provides a predictive email defense solution, the number one brand spoofed by cybercriminals in Q2 2018 was Microsoft.

This research kicks off a new quarterly insights series called Phishers’ Favorites. Inspired by Billboard’s charts of the top songs and albums, Phishers’ Favorites highlights the 25 most commonly spoofed brands quarterly, including their current position and how many spots they moved up or down since the previous quarter.

Vade Secure “Phishers’ Favorites”

Here are the highlights from Vade Secure’s Phishers’ Favorites:

  • In Q2 2018, Microsoft unseated incumbent Facebook for the top spot, propelled by a 57 percent increase in phishing URLs. With adoption of Microsoft Office 365 surging, it’s clear that Office 365 has become the number one target for corporate phishing attacks.
  • Coming in a distant second was PayPal, which moved up one spot thanks to a 16 percent increase in phishing URLs. PayPal has always been one of the most targeted brands by phishers, and for obvious reasons: it is the most widely used online payment service worldwide, with more than 237 million active users as of Q1 2018. It’s also accepted by a many online vendors worldwide, making PayPal credentials highly lucrative.
  • Facebook dropped two spots to #3 on the heels of a 54 percent decline in phishing URLs. Facebook has historically been a popular phishing target, as accounts not only contain rich consumer data but they are also used to access numerous third-party apps and services. Facebook’s efforts to increase the security, perhaps combined with greater scrutiny of the platform in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, led hackers to target Facebook much less in Q2.