Kaspersky Lab—spam and phishing in Q2

News by Danielle Correa

Kaspersky's latest report shows that in the second quarter of 2015 spam was controlled by emails based on real events.

Kaspersky's latest report shows that in the second quarter of 2015 spam was controlled by emails based on real events.

In an attempt to remove personal data and voluntary donations from web users across the globe, Nigerian spam emails exploited the themes of the Nepal earthquake, the presidential election in Nigeria and the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

The second quarter of 2015 witnessed an increase in the use of world events in spam emails even though the percentage of spam in email traffic decreased by 5.8 percent from the previous quarter.

Some of the spam included fake messages that requested the recipients to make donations to aid the victims of the Nepal earthquake. Frauds attempted to attract recipients with £1.3mil, which the new Nigerian president was supposedly ready to send the user as compensation. Other emails included deceptive notifications of lottery wins for tickets to see the Olympics in Brazil, 2016.

In Q2, there was a major change to the top three countries most often targeted by mailshots. Germany (19.59 percent), was only fourth in Q1 and topped this quarter's rating. The UK, which led the rating in Q1, moved to second position (6.31 percent) and Brazil came in third (6.04 percent).

The US (5.03 percent), normally the most often targeted country by malicious mailshots, came in fourth. Russia (4.74 percent) climbed up to fifth position after coming in 10th last quarter.

The US and Russia remained the biggest sources of spam. China came in third.

In Q2, Kaspersky's anti-phishing system was provoked over 30 million times on computers of the Lab's users. Loads of masks of phishing URLs (509,905) were also added to the databases during this period.

Since the beginning of 2015, there has been a worldwide decline in the share of spam in emails. The second quarter has seen the decline become more stable, varying between 53.5 percent in April and 53.23 in June.

Trojan-Spy.HTML.Fraud.gen topped ratings of malicious programmes sent via email. The threat appears as an HTML phishing website where a user enters personal data that is then forwarded to cyber-criminals.

Kaspersky Lab analysts advise users not to open emails from unknown senders, click links or open attachments.


Find this article useful?

Get more great articles like this in your inbox every lunchtime

Video and interviews