Internet criminals might be rethinking a favorite scam for stealing people’s personal information, reports the Associated Press: A report being released Aug. 26 by IBM Corp. shows a big drop in the volume of "phishing" eMails, in which fraud artists send what looks like a legitimate message from a bank or some other company. If the recipients click on a link in a phishing eMail, they land on a rogue web site that captures their passwords, account numbers, or any other information they might enter. IBM’s midyear security report found that phishing accounted for just 0.1 percent of all spam in the first six months of this year. In the same period in 2008, phishing made up 0.2 percent to 0.8 percent of all spam. "That is a huge, precipitous decline in the amount of phishing," said Kris Lamb, director of the X-Force research team in IBM’s Internet Security Systems division, which did the report. But "I wouldn’t tell anybody that phishing has died as a threat." Lamb believes phishing might have fallen off because computer users are getting smarter about identifying phony web sites. It could also be that criminals are moving on from phishing to another kind of attack, involving malicious software. IBM said it is seeing more instances of "Trojan horse" programs, which are used to spy on victims…

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