Cap and Trade System, World Cup Soccer, Recent Natural Disasters Favorite Themes for Scammers; Malware Distribution on the Rise; 1-in-10 Spam Messages Has a Virus
GULF BREEZE, FL — July 1, 2010 —
AppRiver, LLC, a leading provider of e-mail messaging and Web
security solutions, today released its mid-year Threat and
Spamscape report, a detailed summary and analysis of spam and
malware trends traced between January and June 2010. During this
timeframe, AppRiver quarantined more than 26 billion spam messages
to protect its customer base of 45,000 corporations and six million
"Spam today is much more than just a nuisance, it is a vehicle
for heavy malware distribution and other serious security threats,"
said Fred Touchette, senior security analyst at AppRiver. "For
example, more than 1-in-10 junk messages contained a virus during
the past six months, making malware distribution a serious cause
for concern. In fact, AppRiver has quarantined more than 45 million
virus messages in the last 30 days alone."
In a new video available at www.appriver.com,
Touchette and fellow AppRiver Security Analyst Troy Gill discuss
highlights from the mid-year Threat and Spamscape report,
- Spammers hop on green bandwagon: Utilizing targeted spear
phishing campaigns, hackers attacked more than 2,000 companies in
an attempt to steal carbon credits and resell them for large
"Hackers are after more than just your credit card numbers, they
want your carbon credits too," said Gill. "With many countries now
on board with the cap and trade system, scammers have found a
lucrative opportunity to exploit the global quest to go green."
- Tragedy in Haiti spurs scams and malware: Spammers and malware
authors used the devastating earthquake in Haiti and the volcanic
eruption in Iceland in attempts to trick e-mail recipients and Web
- Tax time means malware time: It is not uncommon to see phishing
attacks dressed up like e-mail from the Internal Revenue Service.
It is also not uncommon to see these attacks rise in frequency
around the month of April due to the U.S. tax deadline date. This
year was no exception.
- World Cup Woes: With the FIFA World Cup soccer action in full
swing, so are the scams surrounding the events. AppRiver began to
detect World Cup-themed spam as early as January 2010.
- Malware masquerades as lawsuit: In April, AppRiver's filters
stopped a malware attack that piggybacked on an e-mail as an
"official" legal document. The malware posed as a filed lawsuit
against recipient companies. The fake legal document was a strong
social engineering technique, which attempted to use a bit of fear
in order to catch the victims off guard.
- Facebook users targeted over and over: Facebook was a very
popular theme for phishing campaigns. The immense popularity of the
online social network made these attacks much more effective.
- Spam Origins: 45 percent of all spam traffic originated from
Europe during the last six-month period, while the U.S. topped the
list of spam-producing countries. The U.S. regained its top
spamming spot over the former highest spamming country, Brazil.
During the past six months, AppRiver also saw a major upswing in
spam from Ukraine.
For a full copy of AppRiver's Threat and Spamscape Report,
About AppRiverAppRiver is a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) provider offering
award-winning e-mail and Web security solutions to businesses of
all sizes. Understanding the need to protect networks from today's
increasingly complex IT threats, AppRiver offers businesses a
comprehensive, yet affordable subscription-based solution that
incorporates the latest spam and virus protection, e-mail
encryption and Web security on the market. In addition, the company
provides a complete managed service for Microsoft® Exchange. Since
its inception, AppRiver has sustained an impressive 95% customer
retention rate while growing its customer base to more than 45,000
companies and over 6 million mailboxes worldwide. The company is
led by a 2009 Ernst & Young Florida Entrepreneur of the Year
award winner, and has been identified as one of the Coolest Cloud
Security Vendors in 2010 by Everything Channel's CRN magazine. For
more information, please visit www.appriver.com.