"In the third quarter of 2017, we noticed that almost a quarter of all phishing sites were hosted on HTTPS domains, which is almost double the percentage we saw in the second quarter."
"A year ago, less than 3% of phishers used websites that had SSL certificates. "Two years ago, that number was less than one percent." said the PhishLabs administrator, Mr Crane Hassold.
The reasons behind this change are enough. Phishers often violate pages to host phishing attacks, and it is logical that by increasing legitimate domains with HTTPS there is also an increase in HTTPS pages that have been infringed.
Today, too, it is much easier, faster and cheaper to obtain SSL certificates. So the scammers are taking advantage of the situation to equip the e-fishing domains they use with HTTPS.
Although the vast majority of SSL certificates used in HTTPS phishing attacks are obtained for free by services such as Let's Encrypt or Comodo, their use is remarkable because they are not technically necessary for creating phishing websites.
"Without an SSL certificate, the phishing site would still be working as planned," says Hassold.
"So why do scammers bother to create an HTTPS page when it is not really needed? The answer is because phishers believe that the designation 'HTTPS' makes a phishing site more legitimate for potential victims and therefore more likely to lead to a successful outcome. And unfortunately, they are right. "
Many users are unaware that the HTTPS presence only means that the communication between the browser and the site is encrypted. They believe that watching the green pad and HTTPS before a domain name means that the site itself is secure (ie Safe to use = legitimate).
The fact that browsers like Google Chrome show pages with SSL certificates as "Safe" in the URL bar does not help eliminate these attacks.