Menu
Can you spot a phish?

Can you spot a phish?

Scientists at Carnegie Mellon University have developed an online game designed to teach Internet users about the dangers of phishing.

Featuring a cartoon fish named Phil, the game, called Anti-Phishing Phil, has been tested in CMU's Privacy and Security Laboratory. Officials with the lab say users who spent 15 minutes playing the interactive, online game were better able to discern fraudulent web sites than those who simply read tutorials about the threat.

The game focuses on teaching internet users how to tell the URL of a fraudulent site from a legitimate one, officials say. It offers tips such as examining URLs for misspellings of popular sites, dissecting a Web address to understand where it's pointing to, and using Google to validate a URL against search results.

The lab has now decided to open up the game for broader testing. Visitors to the site who click on "play the game" are given a short quiz, play the game, and then take another quiz, officials say. Visitors who submit their email addresses and take a follow-up quiz the next week are entered in a raffle to win a US$100 Amazon.com gift card.

The game was developed to help raise awareness about phishing attacks, in which spam emails that appear to come from a legitimate bank or retail organisation try to lure the recipient into entering personal or financial information into a fraudulent Web site, where it can be stolen and used in identity theft.

More than viruses and other malware, users run the risk of falling prey to a phishing attack because these scams rely on social engineering and can't be protected against by technology, professors at the lab say.

While security experts argue the effectiveness in educating users to be aware of phishing scams, the Ph.D. student who developed Anti-Phishing Phil, Steve Sheng, this summer presented results of a study showing that training improved Internet users' ability to tell a legitimate web site from a fraudulent one. According to Sheng's research, users in the study improved their accuracy in spotting fake sites from 69 percent before playing the game to 87 percent after.

This project is part of a larger CMU antiphishing research initiative funded by the National Science Foundation and the Army Research Office.

GO TO:

2007 to 2027: The shapes of things to come in IT

What won't change. what might change, what will change


Follow Us

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags carnegie mellon

Featured

Slideshows

Meet the leading female front runners of the Kiwi channel

Meet the leading female front runners of the Kiwi channel

Reseller News honoured the leading female front runners of the New Zealand channel at the 2018 Women in ICT Awards (WIICTA) in Auckland. The awards honoured standout individuals across seven categories, spanning Entrepreneur; Innovation; Rising Star; Shining Star; Community; Technical and Achievement.

Meet the leading female front runners of the Kiwi channel
Meet the top performing customer-centric Microsoft channel partners

Meet the top performing customer-centric Microsoft channel partners

Microsoft honoured leading partners across the channel following a year of customer innovation and market growth in New Zealand. The 2018 Microsoft Partner Awards recognised excellence within the context of the end-user, spanning a host of emerging and established providers.

Meet the top performing customer-centric Microsoft channel partners
Reseller News launches new-look Awards at 2018 Judges’ Lunch

Reseller News launches new-look Awards at 2018 Judges’ Lunch

Introducing the Reseller News Innovation Awards, launched to the channel at the 2018 Judges’ Lunch in Auckland. With more than 70 judges now part of the voting panel, the new-look awards will reflect the changing dynamics of the channel, recognising excellence across customer value and innovation - spanning start-ups, partners, distributors and vendors.

Reseller News launches new-look Awards at 2018 Judges’ Lunch
Show Comments