The term "pharming" is based on the words "farming" and "phishing". Phishing is a type of social-engineering attack to obtain access credentials, such as user names and passwords. In recent years, both pharming and phishing have been used to gain information for online identity theft.
Pharming has become of major concern to businesses hosting ecommerce and online banking websites. Sophisticated measures known as anti-pharming are required to protect against this serious threat. Antivirus software and spyware removal software cannot protect against pharming.
An Example of Pharming
Suppose, for example, your friend played a trick on you, and changed a contact list on your mobile phone. Instead of a friend’s number which you have recorded in your phone as John, your pal changed it to Mary instead, without you being aware of this change. When you try to call John, you inadvertently call Mary instead. This is, generally speaking, how pharming attacks mess with their victim’s information.