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Acer America
Acer America Corp. is a computer manufacturer of business and consumer PCs, notebooks, ultrabooks, projectors, servers, and storage products.

Location

333 West San Carlos Street
San Jose, California 95110
United States

WWW: acer.com

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January 16, 2010 |

Commtouch Releases Study of Q4 2009 Malware Trends

Web security innovator says Mal-Bredo A was the most popularly proliferated virus, and it points to social media Web sites as a key vessel for cybercriminals.

Commtouch Releases Study of Q4 2009 Malware Trends

Web security innovator says Mal-Bredo A was the most popularly proliferated virus, and it points to social media Web sites as a key vessel for cybercriminals.

Ask Asaf Greiner to comment about malware proliferation, and he has plenty to say.

During the past quarter, he tells EH Publishing, cybercriminals focused on distributing the Mal-Bredo A virus. While the number of variants decreased from 10,000 to 1,000 as compared to Q3 2009, it was spread with much more virulence, Greiner reports.
Commtouch Releases Study of Q4 2009 Malware Trends

And Greiner should know.

Asaf Greiner is vice president of products for Commtouch, a Web security innovator-maker of Recurrent Pattern Detection and GlobalView technologies that identify and block messaging and Web security threats.

Greiner’s information comes from a quarterly trend report his company publishes. The data in the report is based on the analysis of more than 2 billion e-mail messages and Internet transaction seen daily within his company’s cloud-based global detection centers.

“Blended threats, including fake Swine Flu alerts and Halloween tricks, continued to circulate [in Q4 2010], while spammers introduced a few new ploys, including MP3 spam and personal enhancement spam targeting women,” the quarterly trend report states.

For Greiner, these trends suggest a growing innovation on the part of malware creators. “As we review the Internet threats for [Q4], we can really see the creativity the cybercriminals use to ensure their messages are opened,” he says. “Whether we like it or not, their activities really demonstrate when society-wide activities, such as social media participation, reach critical mass.

“Essentially,” Greiner explains, “if a spammer is using a specific brand to entice consumers to open their mail, it means that brand has achieved a strong, positive reputation.”

Here are a few more pieces of Web security trend information gleaned from the quarterly report:

  • An average of 312,000 zombies were newly activated daily for the purpose of malicious activity during the quarter studied.
  • Spam levels averaged 77 percent of all e-mail traffic throughout the quarter, peaking at 98 percent in November and bottoming out at 68 percent at the end of December.
  • Sites in the “Computers & Technology” and “Search Engines & Portals” categories topped the list of Web categories manipulated by phishing schemes.
  • “Business” continued to be the Web site category most infected with malware for the third quarter in a row.
  • Pharmacy spam remained in the top spot with 81 percent of all spam messages; last quarter, it led with 68 percent. Replicas remained in the No. 2 spot, falling from 19 percent to 5.4 percent.
  • Brazil continues to produce the most zombies, responsible for 20.4 percent of global zombie activity.

More details, including samples and statistics, are available in the Commtouch Q4 2009 Internet Threats Trend Report.


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