Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Vulnerabilities / Threats

Search Engine Malware Doubled In 2010, Report Says

Spam down, Twitter crime rate up by 20 percent, according to Barracuda research

Malware authors are increasingly using search engines and social networks to spread their wares and are relying less on email, according to a report published yesterday.

In its new "2010 Annual Security Report," Barracuda Networks says spam dropped by half during 2010, while search engine malware doubled.

The Twitter Crime Rate -- the percentage of accounts created per month that are eventually suspended by Twitter -- increased 20 percent in 2010, Barracuda says, "signifying a concentrated focus on the more lucrative social networks and search engines as attack vectors."

"The shift from email to search engines and social networks changes the way we think about security because the user no longer has to do something -- like click on an attachment -- to be infected," said Paul Judge, chief research officer at Barracuda Networks, in an interview at the RSA 2011 conference last month. "You can't just blacklist the known malicious sites. Your [antivirus] software may not look for iFrames that can lead to infection."

To help users fight infection on social networks, Barracuda Networks yesterday rolled out a free service, Profile Protector, which helps detect malicious threats on Facebook and Twitter.

According to the study, attackers have increased the spread of search engine malware and expanded their reach beyond Google. In June 2010, Google was crowned king of malware, turning up more than twice the amount of malware as Bing, Twitter, and Yahoo! combined, the report says. But by December 2010, with Google producing 38 percent of overall malware, Yahoo! was at 30 percent, Bing at 24 percent, and Twitter at 8 percent.

The amount of malware found daily across the search engines increased 55 percent between June and December, Barracuda says. One in five search topics leads to malware, while one in 1,000 search results leads to malware.

Barracuda Labs also analyzed more than 26 million Twitter accounts in order to measure and analyze account behavior. The number of true Twitter users -- those with more than 10 followers and friends -- increased to 43 percent in the second half, up from only 29 percent in June 2010.

For every 100 Twitter users, 39 have between one and nine followers, while 50 have more than 10 followers. Approximately 79 percent of Twitter users tweet less than once per day, the report says.

After decreasing at the end of 2009, the Twitter Crime Rate increased 20 percent from the first half of 2010 to the second half of 2010, going from 1.6 percent to 2 percent, Barracuda Networks says.

Have a comment on this story? Please click "Comment" below. If you'd like to contact Dark Reading's editors directly, send us a message. Tim Wilson is Editor in Chief and co-founder of Dark Reading.com, UBM Tech's online community for information security professionals. He is responsible for managing the site, assigning and editing content, and writing breaking news stories. Wilson has been recognized as one ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
COVID-19: Latest Security News & Commentary
Dark Reading Staff 11/19/2020
New Proposed DNS Security Features Released
Kelly Jackson Higgins, Executive Editor at Dark Reading,  11/19/2020
How to Identify Cobalt Strike on Your Network
Zohar Buber, Security Analyst,  11/18/2020
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win an Amazon Gift Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: This comment is waiting for review by our moderators.
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you today!
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2020-28331
PUBLISHED: 2020-11-24
Barco wePresent WiPG-1600W devices have Improper Access Control. Affected Version(s): 2.5.1.8. The Barco wePresent WiPG-1600W device has an SSH daemon included in the firmware image. By default, the SSH daemon is disabled and does not start at system boot. The system initialization scripts read a de...
CVE-2020-28928
PUBLISHED: 2020-11-24
In musl libc through 1.2.1, wcsnrtombs mishandles particular combinations of destination buffer size and source character limit, as demonstrated by an invalid write access (buffer overflow).
CVE-2020-28994
PUBLISHED: 2020-11-24
A SQL injection vulnerability was discovered in Karenderia Multiple Restaurant System, affecting versions 5.4.2 and below. The vulnerability allows for an unauthenticated attacker to perform various tasks such as modifying and leaking all contents of the database.
CVE-2020-13620
PUBLISHED: 2020-11-24
Fastweb FASTGate GPON FGA2130FWB devices through 2020-05-26 allow CSRF via the router administration web panel, leading to an attacker's ability to perform administrative actions such as modifying the configuration.
CVE-2020-13942
PUBLISHED: 2020-11-24
It is possible to inject malicious OGNL or MVEL scripts into the /context.json public endpoint. This was partially fixed in 1.5.1 but a new attack vector was found. In Apache Unomi version 1.5.2 scripts are now completely filtered from the input. It is highly recommended to upgrade to the latest ava...