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Sophos Lists Top Ten Malware For 2006

Sophos has listed the most severe malware threats and deceptive e-mails that created havoc for computer users across the world during January 2007.

Experts at SophosLabs made the list in a compiled report titled 'Sophos Security Threat Report 2007'. The report discloses that the proportion of infected e-mail dropped from 1 in 44 in 2005 to only 1 in 337 (0.3%) last year. Despite that some high-risk malware are entering users' mailboxes. Worms like Netsky, Mytob and Sober spread far and wide through e-mail in 2006.

Sophos' monitoring and analysis of malware reveals that Dorf has climbed to the top in the monthly malware threat chart to comprise 50% of all malware appearing in January 2007.

Massive volumes of spam mails aggressively circulated Dorf, hoaxing news of people killed by the European storm during January 2007. Later the worm creators altered the hoax by launching another campaign using the malware as a romantic e-greeting card the same month. In the other spots of the top ten, Netsky, Mytob and Stratio worms occupied the second, third and fourth places respectively. These three accounted for one-third of all malware.

Sophos' global network of monitoring stations listed the top ten malware families of 2006 as Dorf (46.1%), Netsky (16.1%), Mytob (9.8%), Stratio (8.5%), Zafi (3.6%), MyDoom (2.8%), Sality (2.6%), Bagle (2.5%), Nyxem (1.0%) and Wukill (0.8%) in that order and the rest accounted for 6.2%.

According to Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant for Sophos in a statement on January 29 2007, the list shows that Mytob variants continue to attack inadequately protected computers. Although Mytob appeared first in March 2005 it infects systems even today. With Mytob taking thousands of different forms, it is likely to strike unprotected computers during 2007 as well.

Sophos has detected 7,272 new threats for January 2007 numbering the total malware so far to 214,956. The number of infected e-mails in January 2007 though significantly higher than the number in December 2006, is just 1 in 238 (0.42%).

The security report of Sophos identifies the United States as the host country of the most malware and spam in the world.

Related article: Spike in Attacks Causes Early Release of Windows Patch

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