DHL overtakes Microsoft as the most imitated brand in phishing attacks

A large DHL cargo box stacked against similar boxes
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

DHL has surpassed Microsoft as the most frequently mimicked brand for phishing attacks, according to Check Point.

The cyber security company has released its Phishing Report for Q4 2021, revealing the brands most commonly imitated by fraudsters to steal individuals’ personal information or payment credentials.

Global logistics company DHL accounted for 23% of all phishing attempts, up from 9% in the previous quarter. In contrast, Microsoft accounted for only 20% of all phishing attempts in Q4, down from 29% in Q3.

WhatsApp ranked third in the Q4 report, which also highlighted the continued imitation of social media networks. The Facebook-owned social messaging app jumped from sixth place, representing 11% of all worldwide phshing attempts.

Other frequently imitated brands in phishing scams include Google (10%), LinkedIn (8%), Amazon (4%), FedEx (3%), Roblox (3%), Paypal (2%), and Apple (2%).

A phishing scam from December 2021, for example, involved a malicious email bearing FedEx branding to trick the victim into downloading SnakeKeylogger malware. The email was being forwarded by a spoofed FedEx contact address,, with the subject "Bill of Lading-PL/CI/BL-Documents arrival".

Phishing emails mimicking DHL attempted to steal users' email and password in a similar manner.

“As always, we encourage users to be cautious when divulging personal data and credentials to business applications or websites, and to think twice before opening email attachments or links, especially emails that claim to be from companies such as DHL, Microsoft or WhastApp, as they are the most likely to be impersonated,” stated Check Point Research in a blog post.