Skip to main content

Malware-infested spam emails are on the rise

Security firm Kaspersky Lab has released its quarterly report on the state of cyber-security, and it comes with a couple of interesting figures.

First, it says that even though the number of spam email has been steadily decreasing, those that remain now more frequently come with a malicious attachment.

The number of spam email with malware attached increased 3.3 times, compared to the same period in 2015 (I'd say it really depends on how you look at it – it might just be that the number of other spam messages decreased).

Another interesting finding from the report is that ransomware is becoming even more popular. To be more precise – the Trojan Locky ransomware has been targeting victims in 144 countries, and often contains fake financial information, tricking people into opening the attachment.

The report also says that web browser developers have done a pretty good job implementing various security elements in their products. That is another reason why spam is growing more popular – fraudsters have no other options.

The main topic among these spam messages seems to be – terrorism. No real surprise here, I guess. A popular topic is, according to Kaspersky, how countries are amping up their security to prevent terrorist attacks.

“Unfortunately we are seeing our previous predictions about the criminalisation of spam coming true. Fraudsters are using diverse methods to attract user attention and to make them drop their guard. Spammers are employing a diversity of languages, social engineering methods, different types of malicious attachments, as well as the partial personalisation of email text to look more convincing. The fake messages often imitate notifications from well-known organisations and services. This is raising spam to a new dangerous level,“ says Daria Gudkova, Spam Analysis Expert at Kaspersky Lab.

Photo Credit:

Sead Fadilpašić

Sead is a freelance journalist with more than 15 years of experience in writing various types of content, from blogs, whitepapers, and reviews to ebooks, and many more, across sites including Al Jazeera Balkans, TechRadar Pro, IT Pro Portal, and CryptoNews.