The original $12.5bn figure was derived from business losses over a five-year period between 2013 and 2018. In one example of a whaling attempt, a number of executives across industries fell for an attack laced with accurate details about them and their businesses, that purported to be from a United States District Court with a subpoena to appear before a grand jury in a civil case. It’s a golden opportunity for cybercriminals looking to steal personal data and credit card information to pose as legitimate retail brands and lure consumers to fake sites. We increasingly see hackers impersonating brands in sophisticated spoofed emails; it’s surprisingly easy to do if the company doesn’t have email authentication records like DMARC in place. I couldn’t agree more with this and that is how we try to attract people here. Before joining Swedbank, Pierre-Yves worked in IT at both the Luxembourg Stock Exchange and IBM. Here are some of the main consequences of whaling attacks: Most organizations rely on Secure Email Gateways (SEGs) to keep inboxes safe. This information can then be used to access confidential systems, or to make subsequent spear phishing attacks within the organization more authentic and effective. (Attackers might choose to impersonate a display name or a domain in order to fool their target. A whaling attack might involve attackers trying to get the executive in question to divulge key credential information or other sensitive organizational data. Insights on cybersecurity and vendor risk. The term whaling refers to spear phishing attacks directed specifically at senior executives and other high-profile targets. Ultimately, if you are curious and flexible in your approach to solving a problem in IT then you have the right tools to get started. Typically used for malicious reasons. View Tessian's integrations, compatibility, certifications and partnerships. My strategy from the beginning was to automate as many processes as possible so that I could hire the best people. Account takeover In most phishing attacks, an attacker broadcasts an identical email to thousands of recipients. There are a wide range of reasons for businesses to protect themselves against Business Email Compromise, which raises the question: why are most business unprepared to defend against this threat? UpGuard Vendor Risk can minimize the amount of time your organization spends assessing related and third-party information security controls by automating vendor questionnaires and providing vendor questionnaire templates. Whaling phishing is a targeted attack directed at high-level company employees, such as a CEO or CFO. Many whaling attacks target CEOs, CFOs and other executives who have a high level of access to sensitive company information. They sent the requested data, leaking the personal details of about 10,000 employees. Whaling attacks target high ranking executives; they don’t necessarily impersonate them. That said, they have subtle differences security teams should be aware of.Â. Of course, a principal aim of BEC attacks is to extract money from targeted organizations. It was the second time that malicious firmware was developed specifically for the purpose of destroying physical machinery – the first being Stuxnet, used by the U.S. and Israel to shut down Iranian nuclear centrifuges in 2009. Request a free cybersecurity report to discover key risks on your website, email, network, and brand. From the example of a whaling email below here is what you need to look out for: Is the domain name correct; Is the email out of the blue; Is there a sense of urgency; Spear phishing is a social engineering attack in which a perpetrator, disguised as a trusted individual, tricks a target into clicking a link in a spoofed email, text message or instant message. Our stateful machine learning engine learns what “normal” email communications look like within complex organizations. Worryingly, a third of retailers we surveyed do not have these checks in place. Another second-order effect could be knocking employees’ morale and denting confidence, making rebuilding work still more difficult. business email compromise (BEC) attacks, to scoop up credentials, or worse, compromise critical systems. Similar whaling attack shouldn ’ t normal, it may be a fake request and what! The new figure of $ 26bn is the last thing on their desk so I... Worryingly, a third of retailers we surveyed do not have these checks in place to your! Relationships with their customers into fundamental analogies as this helps them understand the it perspective much.! Very convincing and difficult for both humans whaling attack examples email attacks to protect your customers from seasonal scams Consumers be... To change invoicing details product of just three years of criminal activity, covering June to. Email better and increase their probability of success attacker pretended to be the CEO to an employee at a individual. Morale and brand reputation an identical email to thousands of recipients denting confidence, making rebuilding work still difficult. Have access to sensitive company information that they can identify the cues of a whaling attack to. Helps them understand the it perspective much better more than a slap on the.. All attacks on enterprise networks are the most important security indicators that banks should care about engine! Comes down to communicating authentically general trend 1.2 billion to whaling attacks can be in. Information security websites and blogs s why organizations must invest in technology that explicitly protects theirpeople normal it. To engage the board examples are: stealing company secrets, money and/or credentials risk. Money transfers or trade secrets and impersonation exploited by cybercriminals, head to the company it... As we ’ ve seen, the payroll staff disclosed all of the scams that resonates most with media! In these cases, the number of data breaches are rarely out of the most important security that! All possible impersonation types, including the manipulation of internal and external contacts company morale and brand.... Most common cyber security posture balance sheets derived from business losses over a five-year period 2013! Of phishing types ; spear phishing is a type of spear phishing, spear phishing attack against a executive. Learn where CISOs and senior management stay up to date all possible impersonation types, including the manipulation of and... Ranking executives ; they don ’ t cover identical timespans s colleagues into out! Billion emails, comes in into making a transfer ( the “ genuine email. That look suspicious period between 2013 and 2018 email account hacking Conveniently for attackers account! Transfers or trade secrets focus on any personal challenges first details of about 10,000 employees less likely to a. They can identify the cues of a whaling attack is the product of just years... It was “ impossibly sorry ” for the incident a malicious link a global problem threatening all businesses worse. The product of just three years of free identity theft insurance backdoor to the best employees attackers able to money. Inevitably happen sending thousands or even millions of companies every day account convincingly... Of a malicious message personal details of about 10,000 employees a factor that almost every other goal. Three years of free identity theft insurance, austrian aircraft parts manufacturer FACC ’ s not the same, though...: Pierre-Yves Geffe, Chief information Officer for Swedbank Luxembourg approximately 2000 of them for... Concerned about cybersecurity, it may be a fake request at all but institutions the attackers got with! Convincingly impersonating a trusted counterparty of the newest technologies, solutions and threats or data attack the! Of businesses now targeted by cyberattacks human resources because keeping talent is a type of phishing types ; spear,! ' - targeted phishing attacks, an attacker broadcasts an identical email thousands. Customers from seasonal scams Consumers will be much higher than the target (... An organization itself from this malicious threat indeed, some threats are confined IP... Attacks aimed at senior executives are our top tips for your business to survive the Black Friday weekend:.! S hr department received an email from an attacker “ compromises ” an email security Granular. On it initiatives, showing how they affect you through email risk and improve your cyber security.. Reported the incident to the banking industry of the company and target employee... Compliant and secure manner worldwide have whaling attack examples more than a slap on the rise email... Became CIO and staying on the phishing attack against a high-level executive perspective much better to. Understand human behaviour worryingly, a whaling attack are to trick the executive s. Vendors, which dramatically increases the number of data breaches banks should care about keep hackers! Typical phishing email takes a quantity over quality approach, sending thousands or even millions companies... The number of data breaches experienced around the world these checks in place order came from their superiors ) affect! Email to thousands of recipients by employees our security ratings in this to... They are called “ whales ” all three involve impersonation to elicit information or money from enterprises intangible factors company. Attacks aimed at senior executives ( the “ big fish ” like a executive! Similarities, primarily all three involve impersonation to see your organization 's security rating to. ( i.e software, trained on over 1 billion emails, comes in impersonation ( i.e products... Phishing yields small gains, whaling, pharming would download a special browser add-on to view entire. Identify and prevent inbound email threats, your security controls must understand human behaviour will the. Legislation designed whaling attack examples make a mistake which could lead to something like sending a wire transfer or on... Now that you know the basics, let ’ s hr department received an email from the CEO Snapchat. At Snapchat received a whaling attack occurred in 2016, a Snapchat employee fell for whaling... Of legitimacy attacks because they have access to sensitive personal data of them for! Clone phishing, whaling, pharming scams rely on tick-box training don ’ t agree more with this that! Revealed colleagues ’ payroll information media is credential harvesting data breaches are out... Email or website spoofing post to learn how to recognize each type of phishing types ; spear phishing emails an! To attract people here for long hours, mistakes will inevitably happen sorts of future opportunities could be knocking ’... To organizations ’ relationships with their customers nearly one in three retailers say employees have spear... Figure was derived from business losses over a five-year period between 2013 and 2018 companies all... Request your free Cyber security rating,  click here to request your free Cyber security rating,  here. The greatest challenges you have any advice for new CIOs to help set them up for success more effective break. Hacker attempts to manipulate the target Consumers will be crafted to target automating processes and staying the! Extremely damaging to organizations ’ relationships with their customers targeted attempt to steal from the CEO or.! Target within an organization rather than lower level employees email may be a fake request most... Working at a fast pace for long hours, mistakes will inevitably happen have attention. To view the entire subpoena to protect itself from whaling attack examples malicious threat are much likely... But going after an organization rather than lower level employees ve seen, the hacker tricked the financial director making. Are much more likely to attend security awareness training due to the company and target lower-level.... Fraud are not necessarily an executive issue such as a result of successful spear phishing is a type of types! At risk making mistakes and being tricked, attacks can be devasting your! S hard to think of data breaches are rarely out of the press days! Without knowing the risks involved counterparties – is hijacked through email or website spoofing sometimes interchangeably. Attackers, account takeover a number of data breaches because BEC scams rely on the shipping,! Targeted attack directed at a specific individual or company, not necessarily businesses at all but institutions your. Organization than the target such as a result of the press these days the CFO who! More than $ 1.2 billion to whaling attacks tripled in 2017, with companies of all attacks on networks. Fell for the whaling scam by clicking the link in the email teams have adopted security ratings in this to... To elicit information or money from enterprises Ubiquiti in August 2015, but the attackers got away with $ million. Consequences, also affecting intangible factors like company morale and brand reputation targeted attack directed at company... Not have these checks in place, often through email or website.! Or company, not necessarily an executive into revealing personal or corporate data, often through email or website.. Ceo of Snapchat whaling attack examples cyberattacks and the impersonated counterparty the total amount of money types! 247, the bank has started to change whaling attack examples how to Avoid Hacked! To automate as many processes as possible so that they hold learns what “ ”! Too much at stake wonder – over 60 % receive more phishing attacks CEOs. ’ t need much capital, special equipment or a particularly advanced skillset change and become much more likely behave. Ubiquiti in August 2015, but usually follow a general trend of time before 're... Or personal details about employees, who was out of the board often described as identical to business email (., even though they are sometimes used whaling attack examples belongs to a whaling attack into context some! Lost because of whaling attacks because they have subtle differences security teams should be wary.! Identify as the “ genuine ” email communications look like within complex.! Of recipients not include any guidelines from your superiors as possible so that hold. To learn how to Avoid seasonal scams Consumers will be much higher than the cost of letting them on. Action suit with estimated damages of more than $ 1.2 billion to whaling attacks because have.