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Kaspersky stops record 73 million cyber attacks in Q3 2016

Kaspersky stops record 73 million cyber attacks in Q3 2016
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Kaspersky Lab says it has blocked 73,066,751 attempts to attack Internet users with malicious attachments in the third quarter of 2016 (Q3 2016), considered the largest amount of malicious spam since the beginning of 2014.

The technology security company also says that banks topped the ranking of organizations attacked by phishers, with a share of 27%, followed by ‘Global Internet portals’ at 21.73% and ‘online-shops’ at 12.21%.

Kaspersky Lab says besides distributing ransomware, in Q3 spammers tried to lure victims into fraud schemes by offering them the chance to test products including expensive household appliances or cutting-edge electronics, such as the recently announced iPhone 7.

According to Kaspersky’s Q3 report on spam and phishing, the overall figure of the attempted attacks is a 37% increase compared to the previous quarter. The percentage of spam within global email traffic has increased as around six in ten of all emails received are now spam.

Photo file showing a laptop user
Photo file showing a laptop user

The report also shows the percentage of spam in global email traffic in September to hit an all-time high for the year so far at 61.25%, and majority of those attachments were ransomware trojan downloaders.

“Spam is often just unwanted advertising, but it has a darker side too. Criminals use spam to distribute malware and exploit users’ vulnerability, convincing them to hand over their money and personal details,” Daria Gudkova, Acting Head of Content Analysis and Research, Kaspersky Lab, says.

“The majority of malicious spam emails during the past quarter contained ransomware, which is yet more proof of the rising epidemic of this type of malware. We urge you not to open any suspicious attachments or click on unknown links – the website could be compromised – because all of these can result in device infection,” Gudkova adds.

A mobile phone user seen chatting at a tech event
A mobile phone user seen checking through her email at a tech event in Lagos

Daria Gudkova further says that “fraudsters often use big new stories to trick people. The iPhone 7 example is just one of many that were used during the quarter. As the saying goes – free cheese is only found in a mousetrap. We urge people to stay vigilant, to treat emails from unknown senders with caution and to make sure in advance that they are using a reliable AV solution.”

Kaspersky Lab says besides distributing ransomware, in Q3 spammers tried to lure victims into fraud schemes by offering them the chance to test products including expensive household appliances or cutting-edge electronics, such as the recently announced iPhone 7.

Kaspersky also alerts that a trending email headers used by cyber attackers to include: “Register to test & keep a new iPhone 7S!” and “Wanted: iPhone 7S Testers”.

All people had to do was provide their postal and email addresses, and other personal information, and pay for the postage in return for the products to be sent to them. No guarantees were given and the result was that the fraudsters simply made off with the delivery payments and personal details of their victims, it says.

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Success Kafoi Journalist at Technology Times Media. Mobile: 08077671673 email: success.kafoi@technologytimes.ng

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