How Cyber Fraudsters Are Using ChatGPT For Phishing Schemes

Since its launch in November, ChatGPT has wowed people with its impressive performance and almost human-like responses. According to a Times Of India report, malicious individuals have now started to utilize the strength of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning to produce phishing emails containing hazardous code.

The lack of knowledge regarding language fluency and culture provided a major obstacle to scammers in making their emails look credible. This inability to deceive their victims was a hindrance they had to overcome.

Using ChatGPT to draft business emails, which were later tracked by the Mumbai Police’s Cyber Cell, the scammers managed to send five SMSes in February this year. A cyber cell official reached Gujarat to track down their phishing trail.

The Mumbai Police, keeping a close eye on an email allegedly sent by a non-existent company called Bhakti Enterprises located in Patan associated with spices, found out the message originated from there.

Gujarat says:

“The Mumbai firm lost lakhs to the cyber crooks. The police interrogated some suspects and found that the cyber-criminals had used the AI tool to mimic the language and tone of authentic business emails as well as the SMSes.”

Phishing attempts are conducted by sending suspect emails or links to unsuspecting individuals to trick them into downloading malware that can be used to gain access to their devices and networks.

Complaints about fake emails lodged with the CID crime branch from January 2022 to February 1 totaled 938.

Ninety of these complaints were about business emails that had utilized the identities of senior officials without their permission, according to the report.

Scammers capitalized on the surge in interest in cryptocurrencies, crafting emails to appear as if they were from agricultural traders or officials from petrochemical organizations. These messages offered various sorts of fraudulent schemes related to cryptocurrencies.

Sent from false addresses, the emails presented were entirely fabricated, and consequently, victims faced difficulty authenticating them.

The Gujarat police have expressed their worries about the phishing gangs using AI tools to craft distortion-free emails and SMSes to trap and dupe targets on a massive scale.

Gujarat went on to say:

“Not all hackers are fluent in English, which works against them. Most organizations look for unconventional uses of grammar and unusual wording to weed out phishing emails,”

“But ChatGPT fixes this issue, making messages appear more genuine, and therefore far more likely to be successful as the basis of an attack.”

Mukesh Chaudhry, a cyber consultant for Jaipur police, shared that phishing attacks are rampant in many states, such as Bihar, Jharkhand, Haryana, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh, according to Times Of India.

Phishing gangs utilizing AI tools such as ChatGPT operate in prominent areas and venture into northeastern states like Mizoram and Tripura.

As we navigate the ever-evolving landscape of cybercrime, it’s clear that collaboration and innovation will be key to staying ahead of the curve. By staying informed and taking proactive steps to protect ourselves and our information, we can reduce the risk of falling victim to cyber fraud and ensure that our digital lives remain secure.


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