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MessageLabs Releases Jan. Spam Report

MessageLabs intelligence: spammers exploit new year diffidence - financial uncertainties and personal insecurities

NEW YORK and LONDON -- MessageLabs, the leading provider of messaging and web security services to businesses worldwide, today announced the results of its MessageLabs Intelligence Report for January 2008. The new data reveals that spammers have become more business savvy in 2008, capitalizing on news and seasonal trends in a more commercial way as they take advantage of the looming credit crunch and also try to lure in bargain-hungry shoppers with New Year’s resolutions. Spammers have increased the number of financial-related email promotions and phishing attacks such as financial product offers, lottery scams, loans and jobs. At the same time, they have cut back on replica watch and other well-known spamming topics and focused their attention on weight loss products and bargain designer clothes in increased volumes.

“2008 got off to an aggressive start, especially for the spammers,” said Mark Sunner, Chief Security Analyst, MessageLabs. “Spammers are proving to be more business-minded and time sensitive than ever in their strategies, seeking to exploit the most common and current weaknesses - everything from New Year weight loss hopes to fears about the credit crunch. Unfortunately every month of the year provides the spammers with a newly vulnerable group to target.”

MessageLabs Ltd.

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