The major news of the first quarter was the rapid propagation of the Conficker worm. Research indicates its three variations have infected more than 15 million computers, weaving a massive zombie botnet, since appearing on the scene in November 2008. The botnet lay dormant for weeks, leaving computer users nervous and vulnerable; and only in the last days leading up to the publication of our report did it begin to be activated for malicious purposes.
Throughout the quarter, spammers and malware distributors continued to exploit legitimate sites to bypass traditional content filtering technologies. Recent tactics include the targeting of ISPs and the borrowing of images from legitimate, well-known hosts to use in e-mail messages.
Another growing trend is the use of social networking sites (e.g. Facebook, Twitter) for phishing schemes. By pulling on the heartstrings of networks of friends, unknowing users have fallen victim to money-making and password-stealing schemes.
Read about these trends and more by downloading the Commtouch Q1 Internet Threats Trend Report.