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News

Botnet Closure Drives Spam Down in April

Symantec : 24 May, 2011  (Technical Article)
Symantec reports on the latest state of spam and phishing with the Rustock botnet closure affecting spam but phishing continues to rise with increased targetting of gamers
Botnet Closure Drives Spam Down in April
Symantec’s State of Spam and Phishing report reveals that spam has continued to drop significantly following the closure of the Rustock botnet in March. After falling 27.4 percent that month, spam dropped by a further 5.4 percent in April. Spam now constitutes 74.8 percent of all email messages which is 14.4 percent less than the same period last year.

 

However, phishing rose by 15.6 percent in April. This growth was fuelled by a rise in phishing websites created by attack kits, which increased by 26 percent. Many of the phishing attacks seen exploited the death of Osama Bin Laden and spoofed legitimate media brands as the source to create trust and a feeling of authenticity. These attempted to trick users into clicking on links that supposedly led to uncensored photos and videos from the raid but instead pointed to malicious files or poisoned web pages.

 

Users of the popular FIFA game also came under attack in April. Symantec observed several phishing sites set up with offers of fake ‘coins’ – virtual currency used to buy big name players such as Wayne Rooney, Ronaldinho, Frank Lampard and Xavi. However instead of help with building a title-winning side, the sites were an identity fraud trap.

 

Symantec has noted a continued upward trend of phishing aimed at the gaming sector over the last few months.
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