Internet security firm ESET Ireland has warned computer users are receiving an email titled “Update your account details” which is doctored to resemble a communication from Irish Water.
The email is a phishing scam designed to steal credit card information and Irish Water login information.
“Clicking on the link leads to a forged log-in page, where the victim first hands over their Irish Water log-in details, and is then asked to enter all the details of their credit or debit card as well and confirm it,” ESET warned. “After providing the cybercriminals with all the required info, the user gets bounced back to the actual Irish Water website,” it said.
As always, ESET Ireland recommends users should avoid clicking on any links in such fraudulent emails, as they can lead to counterfeit or infected websites, that can spread malware or cause financial damage. Irish Water has advice for households on water.ie/support/fraudulent-email-advice.
The warning comes as research into EU countries’ vulnerabilities to cybercrime shows that Ireland is among the safer nations in Europe when it comes to online security.
Website Builder Expert, an online company for small businesses, used data from the EU, Microsoft, the Global Cyber-Security Index, and global cyber-security agency Rapid7, to rank countries on their vulnerability.
These rankings were based on criteria such as a country’s previous cybercrime encounter rate, its malware encounter rates per year, its commitment to cyber-security initiatives, and its internet node exposure.
Malta claimed the unwanted first place recognition as the most vulnerable nation, with Finland the least vulnerable in 28th position. Ireland was ranked in 17th place. Despite ranking in the middle of the pack for malware and cybercrime encounters, Malta’s high percentage of exposed internet connection ports (73% of all ports), lack of cybersecurity legislation and poor international co-operation saw it top the list overall.