‘Phishing’ warning issued to 17m consumers

By Kim Yon-se
  • Published : Feb 19, 2013 - 20:57
  • Updated : Feb 19, 2013 - 20:57
The nation’s leading cyber-settlement provider recently informed its some 17 million customers of the growing risk of their accredited certificates being stolen for financial fraud.

The figure accounts for around 75 percent of Korea’s financial consumers who hold Internet banking accounts.

In an email to consumers, the Korea Financial Telecommunications & Clearings Institute said that Internet banking users should be particularly cautious about a “new type of phishing” scam.

KFTC said the practice aims to “steal consumers’ certificates of authentication” by spreading malicious computer codes.

Phishing, first reported in Korea in 2004, is the use of email and websites to trick users into providing information to be used for identity theft.

The KFTC has found that around 700 certificates of authentication were recently leaked via the phishing scam.

In a similar vein, the police said that a new form of phishing, where a victim’s accredited certificate is stolen through email hacking, has been spreading.

Scammers have been refining fraud techniques to steal personal data over the last eight years and a variety of tricks like voice-phishing and text message scams have hit many unsuspecting users.

“Offenders of the new phishing fraud break into victims’ email accounts and exploit accredited certificates for banking to purchase online game money using victims’ bank credit, which makes them much harder to trace compared to previous means including direct wire transfer,” the police said in a statement.

By Kim Yon-se (