MasterCard has taken the initiative to NameProtect to monitor domain names, web pages, and other implements for phishing exploits, in a real-time setting. MasterCard receives reports from NameProtect on phishing activities – they in turn report illegal sites and other activities to law enforcement and financial institutions.
The most prevalent of the exploits phishers are using as of late, and one of the trickiest, is that of DNS pharming and manual redirection. In the first, hackers get into an enterprise’s DNS server, and change DNS and IP address information. A user hits a URL, but is sent to a fake site. In the latter, the phishers set up a whole DNS server of their own, then infect a user’s computer with code that points the browser to their latest creation. Same result – the user gets a fake site that looks and feels like the real thing.
Much of this problem can be avoided by keeping anti-virus software on your machine, not clicking on email links, and sticking to the use of large ISPs DNS servers wherever possible.