Legitimate SaaS Platforms Being Used to Host Phishing Attacks

Instead of creating phishing pages from scratch, more and more cybercriminals are now abusing legitimate software-as-a-service (SaaS) platforms, including various website builders or form builders, to host their phishing pages. Since these URLs are hosted on legitimate domains, they can be especially difficult for many phishing detection engines to detect. Furthermore, these platforms typically require little to no coding experience, significantly lowering the barrier to entry for creating and launching phishing attacks.

From the beginning of 2020 to June 2022, Palo Alto Networks analyzed the URLs detected by our Advanced URL Filtering service, and discovered that the number of phishing URLs hosted on legitimate SaaS platforms has continued to increase at an alarming rate. In fact, from June 2021-June 2022, the rate of newly detected phishing URLs hosted on legitimate SaaS platforms has increased over 1100%.

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Source: Palo Alto Unit 42