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Cyber Criminals Exploit Social Network’s Popularity to Spread Malware

On January 12, 2010, Commtouch issued its Q4-2009 Internet Threats Trend Report, highlighting that during this period, a virus named 'Mal-BredoA' spread across the globe continuously from Q3-2009. Cyber criminals morphed the packaging of virus as attachments from world-renowned package delivery firm, but it actually sent from the frequently-visited social-networking website, Facebook.

However, throughout Q4-2009, the number of variants of Mal-Bredo fell to less than 1,000, while in reality the attacks grew in number.

Apart from this, the report indicates that during Q4-2009, a mean of 312,000 compromised PCs called zombies was daily used to carry out malicious activity. Among all the nations, Brazil is still producing majority of zombies, contributing a 20.4% share in worldwide zombie activity.

Moreover, the levels of spam represented a mean 77% of the total e-mail all through Q4-2009. During November 2009, they reached a peak of 98% and dropped to the lowest of 68% during December-end, 2009.

As for spam categories, pharmacy spam continued to be most prevalent, accounting for 81% of the total junk e-mail. Incidentally, during Q3-2009, it topped all types of spam with 68%. Replicas continued to be placed at No.2, dropping to 5.4% from 19%.

Furthermore, the types of websites that phishers exploited most were "Search Engines & Portals" and "Computers & Technology." During Q3-2009, however, the type of website which had the maximum malware infection kept on being "Business" sites ever-since Q1-2009.

Commenting on these findings, Asaf Greiner, Vice-President of Products at Commtouch, said that an analysis of the online attacks of Q4-2009 showed how immensely creative cyber-criminals were at making sure that people opened their e-mails, as reported by TradingMatrkets on January 12, 2010.

Greiner further said that whether people favored it or not, the criminals' activities truly indicated the occasions when participation by social media or similar society-wide activities reached their crucial levels. He added that specifically, if a spam mailer exploited one particular brand to lure end-users into viewing his message, the implication was that the brand had acquired a positive and strong reputation.

Related article: Cyber Child abuser Sentenced To Imprisonment

» SPAMfighter News - 1/21/2010

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