McAfee Threats Report: Third Quarter 2012-2st Section

The McAfee Labs has studied the security threats of the third quarter of 2012 in a report. The following report is briefing that report.
Messaging Threats

Despite a spike in January, spam levels are still slowly decreasing year over year. As expected, the small increase that began during the second quarter has ended and the trend continues downward.

Botnet breakdowns

Infections from messaging botnets have showed an overall decline since May. In September, the number returned to the level of the fourth quarter 2011. From July to September this year, not only did Grum disappear, but Festi and Cutwail infections were sharply down as well.

Web Threats
Websites can gain bad or malicious reputations for a variety of reasons. Reputations can be based on full domains and any number of subdomains, as well as on a single IP address or even a specific URL. Malicious reputations are influenced by the hosting of malware, potentially unwanted programs, or phishing sites. Often we observe combinations of questionable code and functionality. These are just a few of the factors that contribute to our rating of a site’s reputation.
At September’s end, the total number of suspect URLs tallied by McAfee Labs overtook 43.4 million, which represents a 20 percent increase over the second quarter. These URLs refer to 23.7 million domain names, up 5 percent from the previous period.

In our databases, these URLs and domains are classified according to their risk ratings:

Similar to last quarter, we recorded an average of 2.7 million new suspect URLs per month. This quarter, we analyzed more than 500,000 domains, compared with 300,000 in previous months.

Many of these suspicious URLs (90.9 percent) host malware, exploits, or codes that have been designed specifically to compromise computers. Phishing and spam represent 3.5 percent and 1.1 percent, respectively.

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