Online banking scams rose threefold in 2018: HKMA

There were 62 cases of phishing last year.

Cybercriminals did not let up on Hong Kong’ banking sector as online scams increased threefold to 142 reported cases in 2018, according to data from the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) reported by South China Morning Post.

There were only 44 reported incidents of online scams in 2017 and 35 in 2016.

Also read: High-paying jobs open in cybersecurity and mobile development

Phishing emerged as the fastest-growing cyberscam in Hong Kong in 2018 with 62 reported cases compared to 7 in the previous year. This was followed by cases of fraudulent bank websites and suspicious mobile banking apps.

In September 2018, Hong Kong launched a scheme strengthening its cyber security defenses called Cybersec Infohub that aims to promote and facilitate exchange of cybersecurity information between the public and private sectors and the larger community.

A study by Microsoft revealed that cyberattacks could easily wipe out about 10% of Hong Kong's GDP or around $249.6b annually over the next few years. “As companies embrace the opportunities presented by cloud and mobile computing to connect with customers, they take on new risks,” Microsoft Asia chief cybersecurity officer Michael Montoya said in a statement.

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