Thunderbird gets phishing detection

Thunderbird gets phishing detection

Summary: The next version of Thunderbird should give users extra protection against online fraud

TOPICS: Security
Developers have created an anti-phishing tool for the open source email application Thunderbird.

Mozilla contributor Henrik Gemal said last week in a blog that the phishing detector has been added to Thunderbird. This feature is likely to be available in the next release of Thunderbird, version 1.1, according to the Mozilla bug report.

When a user clicks on a link in an email that appears to be a phishing URL, the detector will prompt the user with a dialog box before the Web site is opened, said Gemal. The detector is triggered if the URL has a numeric IP address rather than a domain name, or if the URL does not match the address displayed in the link text.

Firefox, the Mozilla Organization's browser and Mozilla Suite, its Internet application suite, can already detect some phishing scams, according to the Mozilla news site These applications will warn users who try to visit a URL that includes an unnecessary username -- a trick used by phishers to hide the true domain name of a site.

Earlier this month, a vulnerability was discovered in Firefox that could make users of the open source browser more likely to fall for phishing scams. This article elicited a wide range of opinions -- both from fans of the open source browser and from those who were less enamoured with it.

Topic: Security

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  • No innovation points for Thunderbird. Just a me too.
    Eudora v6.2 (released 11/8/04) was first in this space with ScamWatch feature and it works great. And it's available in all versions of Eudora v 6.2 including the free versions.
  • Well, to each his own - I'm still waiting to see that appear in Outlook Express, which has been out for what, 4 years?
    Remember that Thunderbird hasn't been in development as long as other products have been - and it's still packing much more functionalities than many other ones, that usually make you pay for those.
    The last time I tried Eudora, it was version 5 - all attached files were kept unencrypted on the disk, and were containing so many viruses it was scary.
    I'm using Thunderbird to access all my pop accounts; it's small, secure, free, cross-platform, if I really feel like seeing how it's done I can do it... And I don't have to wonder if I need this or that licence if I use it at home or at work.
  • MailScanner has been doing this at the gateway for several months now. I will be interested to see quite how good Thunderbird's implementation is. In the mean time check out for a free solution to this problem.