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MaaS-based Cyber-attacks Predicted becoming Commonplace during 2012; VeriSign

A special kind of business model that is called MaaS (malware-as-a service) is becoming increasingly popular among cyber-criminals in comparison to other models, as developers of attack codes employ it, while offering additional facilities alongside the original ones of the said attack codes. This has been highlighted in VeriSign's "iDefense Cyber Threats and Trends Report for 2012" that the company lately released.

It's anticipated that the MaaS model of cyber-attack will keep on spreading as increasing numbers of other malware creators use the method. In fact, last year (2011), the MaaS approach had been in vogue via secret crime forums.

Remarking about the study paper's above interesting discovery, General Manager Rick Howard of VeriSign iDefense stated that the con artists on cyber space were attempting at making some money, while for keeping themselves ahead of other malware creators they were providing an extra layer of utility. That was towards keeping their clients pleased, he added. Infosecurity published this on March 22, 2012.

Moreover, according to the new study, after the source code of ZeuS became public during 2011, there has been the development of numerous ZeuS samples along with Ramnit and SpyEye in stronger forms. The ZeuS code's dissemination was noticeably fast throughout the Net, enabling worldwide malware writers to have a skillfully written and highly effective platform for malicious programs.

Nonetheless, similar to SpyEye and Ramnit, more less powerful Trojan viruses will perhaps get written which will possibly also have the ZeuS' features for attack. This tendency may become more prominent with the emergence of fresh malware families, which in addition to enhancing themselves through the ZeuS elements, will enhance ZeuS too by adding fresh functionality designed particularly for every fresh variant group. Significantly, there will be a remarkable influence, following the ZeuS code's publication, on fresh malevolent Trojan generations, during 2012.

Consequently, there'll be an increase in banker Trojans that'll infect more and more users of Internet banking over an extended time-frame, the report states.

Luckily, the new ZeuS code-based malware strains will be detectable with anti-virus programs leading to a decline in those strains' impact, the report forecasts.

Related article: Mac OS X Devoid of Malware, Vexing Experts

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