Over 90 Percent of Emails That Reached Companies in Q3 Were Spam

October 27, 2008
Over 90 Percent of Emails That Reached Companies in Q3 Were Spam,
According to PandaLabs

GLENDALE, Calif., Oct 27, 2008 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ --PandaLabs, Panda

Security'smalware analysis and detection laboratory, today announced that less than sixpercent of emails that reached companies in the third quarter of 2008 werelegitimate correspondence. Moreover, 1.43 percent of emails contained malware.The data, extracted from a sample of more than 123 million emails and analyzedby TrustLayer Mail

(http://www.pandasecurity.com/enterprise/solutions/trustlayer/), the anti-spammanaged service from Panda Security, found the most frequently detectedstrains of malware during this quarter included Netsky.P, and theSpamtaLoad.DO and SpamtaLoad.CZ Trojans.

% spam % infected
January 76.27 1.84
February 87.83 3.08
March 86.51 1.32
April 94.75 0.88
May 94.71 0.97
June 93.35 0.87
July 90.43 0.98
August 93.01 0.99
September 91.89 2.34

Recent trends:
New Spam TrendsThe third quarter of 2008 saw the expansion of the use of .swf (Flash)files to dodge anti-spam filters. This particular strategy involves includinglinks in junk mail with interesting news headlines or erotic photos that thenconnect to an .swf file. The files themselves are generally hosted onlegitimate websites but are actually designed to redirect users to the webpage that cyber crooks want to advertise. The most common sites involved inthis scheme were fake online pharmacies.Another popular scam that arose in the third quarter was the use ofvertical writing and hidden characters to trick content-based anti-spamengines. The technique involves writing messages vertically instead ofhorizontally to avoid being caught before it can appear in a user's inbox.Also included in these emails is an additional message contained in white fontthat can only be seen once the user selects the content of the mail.

Complete article on security trends including spam pdf link.