Phishing vs Spoofing: Difference and Comparison

It would not be an understatement to say that the world is not revolving around technology. Still, the world is being consumed by technology gradually, and this sentence is proved right whenever something comes up about the threats in virtual technology.

Phishing and Spoofing are two types of cyber threats that are very common worldwide, but many differences lie between these two terms. 

Key Takeaways

  1. Phishing is a cybercrime that uses deceptive communication to obtain sensitive information, such as login credentials or financial data.
  2. Spoofing involves disguising a communication’s origin or identity to deceive the recipient, as a component of phishing attacks.
  3. While both phishing and spoofing are deceptive practices, phishing specifically targets personal information, and spoofing is a technique used to support such attacks.

Phishing vs Spoofing 

The difference between Phishing and Spoofing is that the former refers to a specific kind of cyber threat in which the purpose happens to steal some valuable information from the victim. Still, in the latter, the transmission plays no role, and the primary purpose happens to attain a new identity. Apart from this, many other differences can be drawn between these two threats. 

Phishing vs Spoofing

Fishing is used whenever an incident occurs in which the hacker intentionally commits theft of some valuable information of the user by way of fraud etc.

This information can be anything from the banking passwords of the victim to the address of his house as well. Usually, this act is done after placing the victim in the circle of trust of the accused. 

But on the other hand, the term spoofing is used when the hacker’s intention is to attain a new identity by way of any system of cyber hacking.

In this event, the hacker does not intend to steal any kind of information from the user to make any beneficial use of it. Still, instead, he wishes to attain the identity of the user due to any reason. 

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Comparison Table

Parameters of Comparison Phishing  Spoofing  
Meaning  A cyber threat in which valuable information is stolen a cyber threat in which identity is stolen 
Purpose  the hacker wants to steal the identity of the user to become someone that he’s not trust plays an important role, and the hacker makes the victim believe that he is someone who can be trusted 
Types  Phone phishing, clone phishing IP spoofing, email spoofing 
Theft of  property identity 
Element of trust the part of trust is immaterial the element of trust is immaterial 
Involvement of fraud fraud is always involved fraud need not be involved mandatorily 

What is Phishing? 

The term phishing refers to a specific variety of cyber-attacks in which the person who commits the attack aims towards any valuable information or property of the person upon whom the attack is being executed to derive some dishonest benefit from that information or property.  

Whenever fishing is committed, it is presumed that the accused made the victim believe that he belongs to a responsible position or organization to persuade the victim to give some valuable information to him even though he is not entitled to derive any of such information.  

In most cases, this act is done against the banking and economic records of an individual to transfer valuable amounts from his account to the account of the attacker. Still, this threat is not just limited to money-related matters, and it can be something severe end of criminal nature as well.

To commit this kind of crime, there is no need to install any typeice or software on the mobile phone or computer of the victim. Mere persuasion by the accused is enough. 

phishing

What is Spoofing? 

Spoofing is a particular and unique kind of crime in the world of cyber technology because, in this crime, the accused does not derive any dishonest benefit out of any property or information of the victim.

Instead, he attains the digital or physical identity of the victim upon whom he is attacking. 

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It can be said that this crime is an act against a person’s identity and therefore happens to be very serious in nature because such actions can cause a lot of law-and-order situations as the person becomes very hard to get identified after changing his identity frequently.

Whenever this crime is committed, in most cases, it is found that the attacker tries to install some software on the victim’s device to enable the victim to fill in his data into the software related to his identity.  

These threats have become a widespread way of getting away with serious crimes as criminals use Spoofing to get new identities in a world of many billion people, and it becomes tough to recognize these people from a crowd of thousands of people. 

spoofing

Main Differences Between Phishing and Spoofing 

  1. Phishing is a crime against information or property, while on the other hand, Spoofing it’s a crime against identity. 
  2. Phishing involves fraud as a necessary element, while on the other hand, Spoofing need not involve fraud sometimes. 
  3. Phishing involves specific crimes such as phone fishing and clone fishing, while on the other hand, Spoofing can be IP spoofing and email spoofing. 
  4. Phishing is done to attain some valuable information, while on the other hand, Spoofing is done to attain a new identity. 
  5. Phishing is done by someone who makes the victim trust him, while on the other hand, Anyone can do spoofing, and trust is immaterial. 
Difference Between Phishing and Spoofing

References  

  1. https://dl.acm.org/doi/abs/10.1145/1124772.1124861 
  2. http://php.iai.heig-vd.ch/~lzo/biomed/refs/Spoofing%20and%20Anti-Spoofing%20Measures%20-%202002_Schuckers.pdf  

Last Updated : 30 June, 2023

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6 thoughts on “Phishing vs Spoofing: Difference and Comparison”

  1. The criminal nature of Phishing and the identity-focused nature of Spoofing are well elaborated in this article. It explains the differences clearly.

    Reply
  2. Phishing and Spoofing, although both deceptive practices, have very distinct purposes. Phishing involves fraud, while Spoofing is more about creating a new identity. Very insightful article.

    Reply
  3. The key differences between Phishing and Spoofing are very well explained in this article. Both are indeed very serious cyber threats that individuals should be aware of.

    Reply
  4. This is an excellent comparison between the two cyber threats. Phishing involves theft of information, while Spoofing is more about attaining a new identity.

    Reply
  5. The digital world is gradually being overtaken by technology, and it’s no longer up for debate. Phishing and Spoofing are two cyber threats that have many differences between them.

    Reply
  6. Fraud is an essential element in Phishing, while Spoofing sometimes does not involve fraud. This article provides a clear understanding of these cyber threats.

    Reply

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