There was a 500 per cent rise in the number of malicious websites detected in 2012.


According to the Websense Threatseeker Network, the rise by 501 per cent in the EMEA region, showed that attackers are 'not letting up' in their pursuit of targets. Speaking to SC Magazine, Carl Leonard, senior security research manager, EMEA at Websense, said that websites remain easy to compromise and in some instances, they have become 'watering hole' style attack traps, waiting for victims to visit.


He said: “We see that some malicious files, once downloaded by a user, download another executable file within a minute. How can you protect against that? It is almost impossible. We are also now seeing almost ten per cent of malware infecting the system registry, while almost 95 per cent of the malware doesn't actually make any changes, it is transparent to the user.”


Asked why this increase in vulnerable websites was so significant and how it was possible, Leonard said that the worrying issue is that often the fixes are not complicated and especially with so many businesses on the internet with a profile, malware authors want to get that presence.


“Businesses are not evolving as quickly as attackers and this is evident of how many companies do not have security as the front of their mind. It is often an afterthought too late but it often just takes a minute,” he said.