Focus: Fighting phishing

On January 26, a meeting was held between representatives of related organizations and members of the Netoscope project. It was organized by the Coordination Center for TLD .RU/.РФ. The participants discussed phishing trends, ways to improve the effectiveness of countering phishing resources in .RU and .РФ and ways to protect the interests of end users, plus, shared forecasts for 2021.

According to Coordination Center Director Andrey Vorobyev, in the second half of 2020 state bodies were focusing on the problem of phishing, and several initiatives in this area are still being considered at the legislative level today. The Coordination Center director suggested discussing how the fight against phishing was structured, and also recalled that the mechanism for interaction between competent organizations was developed back in 2012, and today it was time to evaluate its effectiveness and think about its development.

The center’s project manager, Olga Baskakova, said that in 2020, over 400,000 malicious domains were added to the Netoscope base, including 17,000 associated with phishing, and in 2020, participants in the Domain Patrol project sent over 10,000 requests to cancel domain delegations, including 9,000 requests on phishing websites.

The meeting included representatives from Group IB, BI.ZONE, RU-CERT, Kaspersky Lab, NCICC, the Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology and Mass Media (Roskomnadzor), and the MasterCard Members' Association. They described developments around phishing, the growing role of social engineering, and ways to counter malicious resources and protect users. It was noted that although the number of phishing resources was increasing, the number of people who “fell for the bait” of fraudsters from one website was consistently decreasing. This means that phishing is becoming a less profitable way to take money from the public, and users are becoming smarter and more careful.

Cooperation with organizations competent in identifying fraud on the internet was introduced by the Coordination Center for TLD .RU/.РФ in 2012. Competent organizations provide the Coordination Center and accredited registries with information on websites with illegal content, cases of phishing, unsanctioned access to information systems and the spread of malware from the .RU and .РФ domains. Registries have the right to cancel such websites’ domain delegation. Today, 10 competent organizations cooperate with the Coordination Center: Bizon, Group-IB, Kaspersky Lab, Doctor Web, Safe Internet League, NCICC, Roskomnadzor, ROCIT, and RU-CERT.

Netoscope is an information and analytical project and platform to aggregate information about malicious websites in the .RU, .РФ, and .SU gTLDs. It publishes the latest updates on spreading cyberthreats, and the base of these domains allows information exchange on site abuse, which makes it possible to identify related threats and predict them. Currently, the Netoscope project includes 17 companies: Bizon, Group-IB, Kaspersky Lab,, Roskomnadzor, Rostelecom, RU-CERT, the Technical Center of Internet, Yandex, SURFnet, iThreat Cyber Group Inc., SkyDNS, NCICC, and Doctor Web, and others.

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