Italian authorities have apprehended 18 Italian citizens and 8 foreign nationals from Eastern Europe in an operation dubbed "Phish & Chip" for an alleged scam to trick users of Poste Italiane's home-banking services into handing over their login information.
The scam involved sending fraudulent e-mails that appeared to come from Poste Italiane, a government-owned postal service which offers financial services across Italy, directing users to web servers based overseas that had cloned the appearance of the real banking website. Users were required to type their login information, which was captured and used at a later time to empty the innocent users' bank accounts.
Phishing scams are generally difficult to trace, as internet criminals can use technology to hide their identities. Perhaps one of the most effective ways to counter scammers is to teach computer users to exercise caution over the emails they open, which websites they visit, and who they give their confidential information to.