Phishing: Spearphishing Link
Adversaries may send spearphishing emails with a malicious link in an attempt to gain access to victim systems. Spearphishing with a link is a specific variant of spearphishing. It is different from other forms of spearphishing in that it employs the use of link to download malware contained in an email itself, to avoid defenses that may inspect email attachments.
All forms of spearphishing are electronically delivered social engineering targeted at a specific individual, company, or industry. In this case, the malicious emails contain links. Generally, the links will be accompanied by social engineering text and require the user to actively click or copy and paste a URL into a browser, leveraging User Execution. The visited website may compromise the web browser using an exploit, or the user will prompted to download applications, documents, zip files, or even executables depending on the pretext for the email in the first place. Adversaries may also include links that are intended to interact directly with an email reader, including embedded images intended to exploit the end system directly or verify the receipt of an email (i.e. web bugs/web beacons). Links may also direct users to malicious applications designed to Steal Application Access Tokens, like OAuth tokens, in order to gain access to protected applications and information.
It is a different form of spearphishing that employs links to download malware contained in email, instead of attaching malicious files to the documents itself, to avoid defenses that may inspect the email attachments.