Analysts at security solutions provider AppRiver have seen an increase in the amount of tax-related spams that intend to phish users for sensitive data or infect PCs, according to its Q1 Global Security Report.
The report revealed that the majority of these spam messages either contained malware directly as an attachment or contained a URL leading to a malicious payload.
During the first quarter of 2015, AppRiver said that it quarantined 200 million messages containing viruses in attachments, of the entire year, it saw larger virus spikes in mid-February.
The security vendor also quarantined 5.5 billion spam messages in the first quarter, which is about 1.5 billion more than the previous quarter.
In light of the extent of these scams, software company Intuit, owner of tax software/service Turbo Tax, announced that it is shutting down state tax filing capabilities due to a recent rash of “suspicious” filings.
“We have seen hundreds of variants of tax themed email campaigns attempting to dupe users in the first quarter of 2015,” said AppRiver Security Analyst Fred Touchette.
North America and Europe now account for 78 per cent of the spam traffic, with North America overtaking Europe in 2014 and 2015.
Check out this video to hear AppRiver security analysts Fred Touchette, Troy Gill and Jon French discuss highlights from the report.