CWmike writes "Recent break-ins at high-profile targets like the International Monetary Fund demonstrate just how proficient hackers have become at so-called spear phishing, researchers said on Tuesday. 'Today's spear phishing is not only more prevalent but also much more technically proficient,' said Dave Jevans, chairman of the Anti-Phishing Working Group. 'They're not going for a password, anymore; they're getting people to install crimeware on their computers.' The trend highlights the need for defenses against such targeted threats, requiring companies to look beyond security strategies focused purely on dealing with traditional network threats, analysts said. Increasingly, companies also need to focus on approaches such as continuous monitoring of networks, databases, applications and users, outbound traffic filtering and whitelisting."