Donald Trump the new spam favourite, Kaspersky Lab finds
By Digital News Asia August 22, 2016
- Fake email promises you can be a business success like Trump
- Users earn no money but cybercriminals obtained sensitive data
IN the second quarter (Q2) of 2016, the average level of spam email in overall email traffic came up to 57.3%, according to a quarterly report on spam and phishing by cybersecurity company Kaspersky Lab.
This is a four-point increase compared to Q2 2015, and a one-point from the first quarter of 2016, the company said in a statement.
The US elections, especially news about one particular candidate – Donald Trump (pic above) – became the new hot spam topic this quarter, it added.
During the past quarter, political topics were among one of the most interesting for spammers, Kaspersky Lab said. The upcoming US elections and the candidates involved gave fraudsters a good opportunity to target users.
Trump became the one of the main topic for the majority of spam email related to politics. In these emails, spammers told their targets about Trump’s unique methods of making money and invited them to copy him with their own business.
To learn more, users were invited to click on the link in the email. The link led to a fake news portal with an article about how Trump made his money.
To start making money themselves, users had to fill in their personal information in the online form on the webpage.
Users earn no money but cybercriminals obtained sensitive data, Kaspersky Lab said.
“Spammers are quite frequently trying to use breaking news and speculate on famous people. Donald Trump was not an exception,” said Kaspersky Lab spam analysis expert Daria Gudkova. “Users should be aware of this and remain vigilant.”
Other hot topics of the quarter were the Olympic Games in Brazil, with both spammers and phishers earning money from sports fans.
Other notable findings from Kaspersky Lab’s Q2 are:
- The United States retained its position as the biggest source of spam, sending 10.79% of unwanted email. Nevertheless, the percentage of spam email campaigns from this country is constantly decreasing. In Q2 2015, for example, it was 14.59% of total email.
- With 10.10% of spam email campaigns coming from Vietnam, this country took second place in the source of spam ranking, followed by India (10.01%). The same quarter in 2015 showed a completely different picture, when Russia (7.82%) took second place and China came third with 7.14% of the world’s spam.
- Germany retained its position as the country most targeted by malicious mailshots. 14.69% of Kaspersky Lab product users in the country received spam emails in their mailboxes. In Q2 2015 Germany was also at the top of the list with 19.59%.
- Germany was followed by China (13.6%) and Japan (6.4%). The same quarter in 2015 was also led by Germany, followed by Great Britain (6.31%) and Brazil settled in third place (6.04%).
- The Anti-Phishing system was triggered 32,363,492 times on the computers of Kaspersky Lab users. In Q2 2015, the system was triggered 30,807,071 times, which is almost a 5% increase.
- The largest percentage of users affected by phishing attacks was in China (20.22%) followed by Brazil (18.63%) and Algeria (14.3%). It is worth noting that the percentage of affected users in Q2 2015 was lower, the top three countries were: Brazil (9.74%), India (8.3%) and China (7.23%). The numbers doubled from the same quarter of 2015.
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