Threat Research | Agari

Business email compromise (BEC) has grown into a billion dollar industry as cybercriminals use look-alike domains and display name deception to trick employees into revealing sensitive information, depositing money into criminally-owned bank accounts, and sending thousands of dollars in gift cards via email—all without ever touching a legitimate email account. When these criminals do gain access to an employee email account and use that access to spy on communications, gain knowledge of business operations, and send attacks on behalf of that employee, the damage can be much worse.

Have you ever received a blank email from someone you don’t know? If you have, it may have been from a cybercriminal making sure your email account is legitimate prior to a Business Email Compromise (BEC) attack. Agari and PhishLabs define BEC as any response-based spear phishing attack involving the impersonation of a trusted party to trick victims into making an unauthorized financial transaction or send sensitive materials.

When it comes to sharing threat intelligence with one another, organizations tend to play the game differently. Some prefer to play the “secret squirrel game,” where attribution is something so sacred that names of actors can only be whispered behind closed doors. In other cases, data is bought on the dark underbellies of the Internet and then sold back to organizations as threat intelligence. For others, like the Agari Cyber Intelligence Division, information is shared amongst trusted individuals who can use it to stop cybercrime and bring criminals to justice.