Online "phishing" (pronounced exactly like the word "fishing") is a way to trick computer users into revealing personal or financial information through an e-mail message or a Web site. A common online phishing scam starts with an e-mail message that resembles an official notice from a trusted source, such as a bank, credit card company, or reputable online merchant. In the e-mail message, recipients are directed to a fraudulent Web site where they are asked to provide personal information, such as an account number or password. This information is then usually used for identity theft.
Phishing Filter is a feature in Internet Explorer 7 that helps detect phishing Web sites. Phishing Filter uses three methods to help protect you from phishing scams. First, it compares the addresses of Web sites that you visit against a list of Web sites that are reported to Microsoft as legitimate. This list is stored on the computer. Second, it helps analyze the Web sites that you visit to see whether they have the characteristics that are common to phishing Web sites. Third, with your consent, Phishing Filter sends some Web site addresses to Microsoft to be checked against a frequently updated list of reported phishing Web sites.
If the Web site that you are visiting is on the list of reported phishing Web sites, Internet Explorer 7 will display a warning Web page and a notification on the Address bar. From the warning Web page, you can continue, or you can close the page. If the Web site contains characteristics that are common to a phishing Web site but it is not on the list, Internet Explorer 7 will notify you in the Address bar that it might be a phishing Web site.
For more information about the Internet Explorer 7 Phishing Filter, visit the following Web sites: