Phishing is a technique hackers use to convince individuals into giving up their usernames, passwords and other personal information. The concept is simple, send an email that looks official from a friend, colleague or service provider. That email contains a link to a login form that looks and behaves like websites we use everyday. The person receiving the email doesn’t think twice about entering their normal login. Now the hacker is now in possession of their stolen identity. The hack doesn’t stop there. Next the hackers will use the new stolen identify to convince others to login to their malicious website. The hack will continue to work up in an organization until they reach the credentials of top executives. These executives typically have access to internal documents, finical data, proprietary information and hold access to critical systems that support the organization.
Spearfishing is when an attacker focuses his efforts on one specific target. The hacker will collect personal details about a specific individual through their social media profiles, blogs and public databases. This will help them form a bait email that has a higher likelihood of success. Once someone has fallen victim, the hackers will install a backdoor into the users computer and begins exploring the network moving latterly from device to device. Once the attackers locate what they are looking for they will send a copy of the data to their servers. Many sophisticated attacks will attempt to remove traces and logs to prevent discovery of what has occurred.