In May, spammers actively used current hot topics in the news to deceive users. In particular, a surge in the number of messages was detected exploiting the news of the death of Osama bin Laden. Such messages contained malicious files as well as links to legitimate payware.
News of the death was even used in the emails of the so-called Nigerian scammers. The trick they used to attempt to extract funds generally stayed the same: the scammers request payment of a small sum with the promise of being returned a much bigger sum in the future. It is worthwhile noting that instead of traditional requests for ‘help’, these new email scams threaten users by saying that their accounts can be frozen due to the suspicion that they are connected with terrorism.
In terms of regional change, Russia has become the world leader in terms of the quantity of malware found in emails detected by antivirus programs, replacing the USA, where the quantity of infected emails received fell by 3.5 per cent. The most widespread malware distributed via email was the Trojan-Spy program Trojan-Spy.HTML.Fraud.gen. Worms like Email-Worm.Win32.Mydoom.m, Email-Worm.Win32.Bagle.gt and Email-Worm.Win32.NetSky.q all remained high in the ratings, while newcomers included two Trojan-Downloader.Win32.FraudLoad Trojans. This type of program installs fake antivirus programs on PCs.
The most marked changes took place in the ratings of web services attacked the most with the use of phishing emails. 4.67 per cent of all phishing emails were intended to steal passwords for the popular free online game RuneScape. As a result, this platform made its debut in the top-ten straight in at No. 3 - way ahead of World of Warcraft - the most popular online game in the world. RuneScape is also of interest to cybercriminals, as it has access to user details of the popular social networking site, Facebook. The overall leader in the rating remained the payment system PayPal, which saw a small rise in the number of phishing emails (23.28 per cent on the figure for April 2011).
The full version of spam activity for May 2011 is available on the site: http://www.securelist.com.
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Kaspersky Lab is the largest antivirus company in Europe. It delivers some of the world’s most immediate protection against IT security threats, including viruses, spyware, crimeware, hackers, phishing, and spam. The company is ranked among the world’s top four vendors of security solutions for endpoint users. Kaspersky Lab products provide superior detection rates and one of the industry’s fastest outbreak response times for home users, SMBs, large enterprises and the mobile computing environment. Kaspersky' technology is also used worldwide inside the products and services of the industry’s leading IT security solution providers. Learn more at www.kaspersky.co.uk. For the latest on antivirus, anti-spyware, anti-spam and other IT security issues and trends, visit http://www.securelist.com.