PHISHING (noun) - Phishing is a criminal online act in which the perpetrator uses email or instant messaging to obtain a victim’s private financial information for purposes of identity theft. The phishers often pose as popular social web sites such as You Tube and e-Bay and direct users to a fake website that looks almost identical to the legitimate site. There, users are asked to update personal information, such as passwords and bank account numbers, that the legitimate organization already has on file. The web site, however, is bogus and set up only to steal the user’s information.
The first recorded use of the term “phishing” was made in 1996. Phishing, also referred to as brand spoofing or carding, is a variation on “fishing,” the idea being that bait is thrown out with the hopes that while most will ignore the bait, some will be tempted into biting.
SOURCE: I came upon the word phishing in a comment linked to a blog posting entitled “10 Traits of Highly Effective Twitter Users” posted by TwiTip. And no, phishing is not one of the traits.
USE IN A SENTENCE: Fortunately, Rose has never fallen victim to phishing because she is particularly guarded about her financial and personal data.