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EMEA Countries Greatest Producers of Zombies, Said Symantec

The EMEA region comprising Europe, the Middle East and Africa continues to be the greatest source of compromised Internet Protocol addresses, hosting 45% of the global zombie PCs, reveals Symantec in its just released State of Spam report.

Security experts state that a 'zombie' is a PC that has come under hackers' control and is used for different online crimes like sending spam, working for zombie PCs as a DNS server, and hosting Internet sites that promote malware or spam.

Symantec's report also reveals that spammers in the EMEA region are behaving more socially. In certain areas of this region, spammers have been excessively advertising social-networking websites in attempts to attract unwary to so-called "friends" web pages. Additionally, the company has found a rise in the number of malicious spam mails masquerading as the IRS.

Moreover, spam with attachments is also soaring. spammers are using zip files within the attachments in most cases.

Based on the most recent estimates, Symantec stated Russia is the leading country targeting the maximum number of zombie attacks on the EMEA region, while Turkey trails in closely.

Apart from EMEA, the country, which is the No.1 host of compromised zombie systems and actively sending spam within that geography, is Brazil. Security specialists add that as nations like China, India and Brazil with an ever-expanding middle class keep on spending excessively on the IT infrastructure and Internet, the areas, where active zombies would be located, will keep on shifting.

Meanwhile, the EMEA countries were the first to be identified as the vanguards in producing zombie IP addresses during September 2008 when there was a spike in global zombie activity. Earlier, in August 2008, the number of active zombies dropped 37%, but it shot up 101% in the succeeding month.

The security specialists further add that as cyber criminals focus on the emerging markets of the world for selecting targets, the rise of developing markets such as in the EMEA region has proved to make this region the new target for spammers. Moreover, the spammers here use localized content like the country's special interests or native language.

Related article: Emma Watson Movie File Drops Malware, States Zscaler

» SPAMfighter News - 13-04-2009

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