Spam hits all-time high PDF Print E-mail
Nearly nine out of every 10 e-mails now contain junk or malicious content, says Symantec.

There has been a dramatic increase in spam, with junk and malicious e-mail accounting for nine in 10 e-mail messages (87%).

This is according to a November state of spam and phishing report, released by security company Symantec.

The report shows a new generation of what the company calls “spam princes” is rising. Asia-Pacific and Japan, as well as South America, have now surpassed North America, with 23% and 22%, respectively, of global spam originating from these regions.

Social danger

Gordon Love, Symantec regional director for Africa, says this is not surprising, considering the massive growth of Internet connections in those regions.

He adds that social networking Web site users are under increased attack from malware and phishing, with Facebook identified as a prime target for cyber criminals. Love says this is because spammers are hiding behind the reputation built by legitimate companies.

“Social networking sites that have a large user base will continue to be targets of malicious and phishing e-mails,” Love explains.

In October this year, an average of 1.9% of all spam messages contained malware. This equates to a 0.6% increase from September, when the number of messages containing malware hit a maximum of 4.5% of all spam.

In addition, Symantec found a 17% increase from the previous month in all phishing attacks, and 30% of phishing URLs were generated using phishing toolkits; an increase of 24% from the previous month.

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