Microsoft, eBay, PayPal, and Visa have joined an antiphishing initiative headed by IT security firm WholeSecurity, the companies said Monday at the RSA Security Conference taking place this week in San Francisco. The so-called Phish Report Network will attempt to slow the spread of phishing attacks by reporting deceptive Web sites to a central database operated by WholeSecurity. Once a site has been reported to the network and confirmed as fraudulent, the organization is expected to notify its members about the URL, allowing companies to block the suspect site and encourage their customers to do the same.
The initiative is being executed through the use of WholeSecurity's Web Caller-ID technology, already in use at eBay and its PayPal subsidiary. Offered as part of eBay's free Internet toolbar, the application notifies consumers when they enter a site that WholeSecurity has confirmed as fraudulent.