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Year 2008 to See More of Malware Spam

According to a report titled, "2008 internet security trends" from IronPort Systems, 2007 had experienced over 83% of spam mails carrying a Uniform Resource Locator (URL), maintaining the trend of combining various malware techniques, as reported by canoe money on April 7, 2008.

IronPort, which is a part of Cisco, is a major Business-to-Business (B2B) provider of appliances for blocking spam. The company indicated in its research report that 2007 saw an increase in URL-based viruses that reached 256% higher from 2006. Also, the amount of spam increased 100% to over 120 Billion spam mails distributed every day.

The report said that this was obtained through malware classes like 'Storm' malware, which carried out new kinds of spam attacks. These attacks included large-scale Portable Document Format (PDF), and Microsoft Excel (XLS) attacks as well as the MP3 outbreak.

The report further says that in 2007, when the 'Storm Trojan' was first spotted in January 2007, it grew from a non-existent malware to one that infected an estimated 1 to 10 Million systems. These are the threats that spammers send to their targets through spam mails that lead the recipient to a URL.

On clicking the URL, the recipient might get an irrelevant message, while in the background a spyware gets installed automatically on the computer. Though this spyware doesn't damage the system, it transmits all of the system's information to remotely located criminals.

As a result, the big companies stand to loose confidential information that is then sold off on the Internet.

Moreover, according to Ambarish Deshpande, Regional Director of IronPort, India, spammers at first would make their way into the cycle only to create their popularity. But, over time these short-term spammers have grown into sophisticated professionals engaged in full time business of 'organized crime' trying to achieve the objective of earning lots of money, as reported by THE FINANCIAL EXPRESS on April 5, 2008.

Based on this observation, Deshpande, said that 2008 would have an increasing amount of this 'organized crime' that would cause serious harm to large organizations.

Related article: Year 2007 To See Further Rise In Security Vulnerabilities

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