Mac Phishing Attacks Have Grown in 2019

Posts by: Carl Jack

Kids Internet Security


Phishing attacks on Macs will almost double in 2019 which was just published in a new report from Kaspersky which begs the question; Are Macs as safe as they were once believed to be?

Phishing activity increases by 30-40 percent each year according to Kaspersky the popular security company who recently rebranded.

 Researchers at Kaspersky detected around 1.6 million phishing instances on Macs between January and June this year (2019) and this proved to be a problem for Mac users who were not so tech savvy or did not have a decent security software installed on their machines.

The phishing threats came in the form of fake emails masquerading Apple, attempting to dupe the recipient into entering their login credentials for Apple accounts into a phony Apple website. The details are then used to make fraudulent purchases at great cost to the unfortunate victim.


History of Previous Mac Phishing Attacks detected by Kaspersky:

  • 2015: Kaspersky software detected around 852,000 cases of Phishing attacks on Mac Operating Systems.
  • 2016: The amount of Mac phishing attacks grew by 86% and 1.5 Million cases were found.
  • 2017:  4 Million threats were detected by the popular security software.
  • 2018: The number rose to 7.3 million cases of phishing on Macs that were found.
  • 2019: Currently, so far this year (2019) there have been nearly 6 million cases detected and this number is expected to reach at least 16 million if they continue at the current rate.

It is worth to point out that these numbers are only the numbers of phishing instances that were detected by Kaspersky alone. The figures do not represent other security software and cases that were not detected at all.

There is a silver lining though. According to the report published on September 11, 2019,  although both the number of malware attacks and the number of affected users have both been increasing annually since 2012, in 2018 the number of affected users actually dropped noticeably from around 255,000 to 87,000.

Instead of fully-fledged viruses and malware most of the cases detected were [adware], a type of malware that is easily distributed in ads across all sorts of

Kaspersky attributed this to Apple making better efforts to protect its consumers. This could also be down to the fact that the amount of Mac users that have installed some sort security software on their Macs has increased.

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