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Malware Detection Declining, Anti-Phishing Filters Detect Less than 50% of Attacks, Says Report

A study comparing best-of-breed computer security vendors suggests more than half of active malware and phishing threats on the Internet go undetected, with an average detection rate of 37% for malware and 42% for phishing. "Given the dynamic nature of today's online threats and the traditionally reactive approach taken by today's malware and phishing detection technology, conventional signature-based solutions are inherently at a disadvantage to keep up," said Panos Anastassiadis, CEO and Chairman of Cyveillance. "Because the majority of damage occurs during the first 24 hours of an attack, early detection of attacks is crucial." more

Brits Targeted by 3.7 Billion Phishing Scams in Past 12 Months

More than 420,000 scam emails are sent every hour in the UK according to a report published by Card Protection Plan Limited (CPP). The study estimates that Britons were targeted by 3.7 billion 'phishing' emails in the last 12 months alone. And a quarter of people admit to falling victim to e-fraudsters, with the average victim losing over £285 each. more

One More Reason to Avoid Diet Drug Fakes: They're Dangerous

Garth Bruen writes: "The Food and Drug Administration is reporting that some people have gotten fake Alli that contained twice the recommended dose of sibutramine (aka. Meridia), another diet drug. The issue is possible heart problems. The FDA discovered the illegal Alli-Meridia switch when otherwise healthy people reported feeling anxious, shaky, nauseated, and sleepless after taking the bogus Alli. Some even had heart palpitations. No deaths have been reported." more

Call Spoofing: Congress Calls on FCC, Russia and China Answer

It is both amusing and dismaying. Last year, Congress passed Ray Baum's Act telling the FCC to do something about those pesky incoming foreign SPAM calls and texts with the fake callerIDs. The FCC a couple of weeks ago responded with a chest thumping Report and Order claiming it has "extraterritorial jurisdiction" that is does not have, and promising it will do something. Don't hold your breath on that one. more

MIT Spam Conference on Phishing as the Worst Spam Problem

At the fourth annual MIT Spam Conference held in Boston Tuesday, speakers said that while the volume of spam ebbs and flows, the nature of unwanted email is steadily becoming more dangerous...

Fresh from an IETF meeting last week, Sendmail's Chief Science Officer Eric Allman spoke about the progress being made with DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM), a sender-authentication proposal from Yahoo and Cisco that's wending its way through the standards body, and how it can be used to fight phishing. more

Email Security an Ongoing Battle, Focus on Manageable Risk Instead

The IT industry will never eradicate security threats to email systems and organizations should take a holistic approach to securing their communication systems to the level where they believe risk is at a manageable state, according to panelists at this week's Inbox email conference in San Jose...

At a packed panel session on email accreditation and reputation, the panelist told audience members that reputation services have taken off rapidly. These services profile the sender's behavior to determine the likelihood that a message is legitimate or spam. The sender's reputation is determined based on multiple criteria then assigned to categories, or lists. more

Microsoft to Push Adoption of Sender ID at Email Summit

Microsoft Wednesday plans to promote adoption of the Sender ID email specification and introduce a new program for helping ISPs protect the integrity of email messages at the Email Authentication Summit in Chicago.

Citing research figures from MarkMonitor, Craig Spiezle, director of technology care and safety for Microsoft, said that Sender ID use among Fortune 500 companies has increased from 7% in July 2005 to 21%. About 32% of all e-mail sent is Sender ID compliant, added Spiezle, who plans to speak about the adoption of Sender ID at the summit.  more

Antispam Group, MAAWG, Outlines Defenses Against Botnet-Induced Spam

A major antispam organization is pushing a set of new best practices for ISPs to stop increasing volumes of spam from botnets. The guidelines, from the Messaging Anti-Abuse Working Group (MAAWG), were drawn up at a meeting in Germany last week and deal with forwarded email and email that is sent from dynamic IP addresses. From MAAWG's news release issued yesterday... more

APWG: The Internet Has Never Been More Dangerous

Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG) released its latest Phishing Activity Trends Report today warning that the number of unique phishing websites detected in June rose to 49,084, the highest since April, 2007's record of 55,643, and the second-highest recorded since APWG began reporting this measurement. "The number of hijacked brands ascended to an all-time high of 310 in March and remained, in historical context, at an elevated level to the close of the half in June," says the report. more

Spam Is Never Timely Nor Relevant

One of the ongoing recommendations to improve deliverability is to send email that is timely and relevant to the recipient. The idea being that if you send mail a recipient wants, they're more likely to interact with it in a way that signals to the mailbox provider that the message is wanted. The baseline for that, at least whenever I've talked about timely and relevant, is that the recipient asked for mail from you in the first place. more

Targeted Social Engineering Attacks Against Corporations Reach Record Levels

A recent report by iDefense Labs estimates that there have been 66 distinct spear phishing attacks between February 2007 and June 2008, with the rate of attacks continuing to accelerate. Spear phishing groups have claimed more than 15,000 corporate victims in 15 months, with victim losses exceeding $100,000 in some cases. Victims include Fortune 500 companies, financial institutions, government agencies, and legal firms. more

Experts See No Spam Declines After Shutdown of Largest Spam Operation

Last week's bust of the largest spam operation in the world has had no measurable impact on global spam volumes, according to reports. The spam gang, known by authorities and security experts as HerbalKing, was reported to have been responsible for one-third of all spam. One of the ringleaders, New Zealander Lance Atkinson, 26, who lives in Pelican Waters in Queensland, has had his US assets frozen by a U.S. district court at the request of the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, which also succeeded in having the spam network shut down via an injunction. more

Postage is Due for Companies Sending Email

Companies will soon have to buy the electronic equivalent of a postage stamp if they want to be certain that their e-mail will be delivered to many of their customers. America Online and Yahoo, two of the world's largest providers of e-mail accounts, are about to start using a controversial system that gives preferential treatment to messages from companies that pay from 1/4 of a cent to a penny each to have them delivered. The senders must contact only people who have agreed to receive their messages, or risk being blocked entirely. more

US Number One Country Hosting Malware in 2008, According to a New Security Report

The latest security report from Sophos suggests that more malware is hosted on U.S. websites and more spam is relayed from American computers, than any other country. As evidence of this, when an American Internet company, McColo Corp., accused of collaborating with spammers and hackers, was taken offline last month, there was a staggering 75% drop in global spam volume. more

Switzerland Leapfrogged Hong Kong as the Most Spammed Country, Says Recent Study

According to the most recent MessageLabs Intelligence monthly report, Switzerland has become the most spanned nation. From the report: "In June, Switzerland leapfrogged Hong Kong as the most spammed country with levels reaching 84.8% of all email. Many countries received a slight decrease in spam levels, with a few increases elsewhere, for example, spam in UAE rose by 7.4%, the highest increase this month. Spam levels in the US reached 68.8% in June, 77.8% in Canada and 74.3% in the UK. Germany's spam rate reached 73.5% and 73.2% in the Netherlands. Spam levels in Australia were 66.9%, 76.6% in China and 70.7% in Japan." more