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T1598 Phishing for Information

Adversaries may send phishing messages to elicit sensitive information that can be used during targeting. Phishing for information is an attempt to trick targets into divulging information, frequently credentials or other actionable information. Phishing for information is different from Phishing in that the objective is gathering data from the victim rather than executing malicious code.

All forms of phishing are electronically delivered social engineering. Phishing can be targeted, known as spearphishing. In spearphishing, a specific individual, company, or industry will be targeted by the adversary. More generally, adversaries can conduct non-targeted phishing, such as in mass credential harvesting campaigns.

Adversaries may also try to obtain information directly through the exchange of emails, instant messages, or other electronic conversation means.936411 Victims may also receive phishing messages that direct them to call a phone number where the adversary attempts to collect confidential information.2

Phishing for information frequently involves social engineering techniques, such as posing as a source with a reason to collect information (ex: Establish Accounts or Compromise Accounts) and/or sending multiple, seemingly urgent messages. Another way to accomplish this is by forging or spoofing10 the identity of the sender which can be used to fool both the human recipient as well as automated security tools.5

Phishing for information may also involve evasive techniques, such as removing or manipulating emails or metadata/headers from compromised accounts being abused to send messages (e.g., Email Hiding Rules).812

Item Value
ID T1598
Sub-techniques T1598.001, T1598.002, T1598.003
Tactics TA0043
Platforms PRE
Version 1.2
Created 02 October 2020
Last Modified 14 April 2023

Procedure Examples

ID Name Description
G0007 APT28 APT28 has used spearphishing to compromise credentials.1415
G0128 ZIRCONIUM ZIRCONIUM targeted presidential campaign staffers with credential phishing e-mails.13


ID Mitigation Description
M1054 Software Configuration Use anti-spoofing and email authentication mechanisms to filter messages based on validity checks of the sender domain (using SPF) and integrity of messages (using DKIM). Enabling these mechanisms within an organization (through policies such as DMARC) may enable recipients (intra-org and cross domain) to perform similar message filtering and validation.71
M1017 User Training Users can be trained to identify social engineering techniques and spearphishing attempts.


ID Data Source Data Component
DS0015 Application Log Application Log Content
DS0029 Network Traffic Network Traffic Content


  1. Australian Cyber Security Centre. (2012, December). Mitigating Spoofed Emails Using Sender Policy Framework. Retrieved October 19, 2020. 

  2. Avertium. (n.d.). EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT CALLBACK PHISHING. Retrieved February 2, 2023. 

  3. Babon, P. (2020, September 3). Tricky ‘Forms’ of Phishing. Retrieved October 20, 2020. 

  4. Ducklin, P. (2020, October 2). Serious Security: Phishing without links – when phishers bring along their own web pages. Retrieved October 20, 2020. 

  5. Itkin, Liora. (2022, September 1). Double-bounced attacks with email spoofing . Retrieved February 24, 2023. 

  6. Kan, M. (2019, October 24). Hackers Try to Phish United Nations Staffers With Fake Login Pages. Retrieved October 20, 2020. 

  7. Microsoft. (2020, October 13). Anti-spoofing protection in EOP. Retrieved October 19, 2020. 

  8. Microsoft. (2023, September 22). Malicious OAuth applications abuse cloud email services to spread spam. Retrieved March 13, 2023. 

  9. O’Donnell, L. (2020, October 20). Facebook: A Top Launching Pad For Phishing Attacks. Retrieved October 20, 2020. 

  10. Proofpoint. (n.d.). What Is Email Spoofing?. Retrieved February 24, 2023. 

  11. Ryan Hanson. (2016, September 24). phishery. Retrieved October 23, 2020. 

  12. Vicky Ray and Rob Downs. (2014, October 29). Examining a VBA-Initiated Infostealer Campaign. Retrieved March 13, 2023. 

  13. Huntley, S. (2020, October 16). How We’re Tackling Evolving Online Threats. Retrieved March 24, 2021. 

  14. Burt, T. (2020, September 10). New cyberattacks targeting U.S. elections. Retrieved March 24, 2021. 

  15. Secureworks CTU. (2017, March 30). IRON TWILIGHT Supports Active Measures. Retrieved February 28, 2022.