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Beware Post-Holiday Phishing

Consumers should be especially watchful for bogus "get out of debt" phishing pitches, a security firm warned.
Fraudsters will be busy in the post-holiday weeks, a security firm warned Thursday, and consumers should be especially watchful for bogus "get out of debt" phishing pitches.

"Every year during the holidays, a high percentage of consumers find themselves spending a little more than anticipated, and then begin to panic," said Jordan Ritter, chief technology officer of Cloudmark, in a statement. "A phishing offer posing as your bank and offering to consolidate your credit card debt under one easy, low-rate card might be especially tempting now."

Cloudmark offers a free anti-phishing toolbar for Microsoft's Internet Explorer that warns users who visit potential phishing Web sites; the toolbar can be downloaded here.

Other anti-phishing resources include the Federal Trade Commission's OnGuardOnline Web site, and an anti-phishing toolbar from U.K.-based Netcraft that works with Mozilla Corp.'s Firefox browser.