US is the most prolific source of spam and viruses

The US has continued its rule as the most prevalent source of spam and viruses, according to threat statistics analysed by managed security company, Network Box. The country has held this unwanted title throughout 2008 and, based on July’s figures, this trend looks set to continue.

This month, the US was responsible for one in four viruses (25.2 per cent), outstripping its nearest rival, Australia, by more than four to one (5.8 per cent). More than one-in-ten (11.6 per cent) spam emails emanated from the US, with Turkey trailing behind in second place (8.4 per cent).
 
In terms of the actual junk emails being sent, it appears that spammers are eschewing the more sophisticated techniques – image-based spam and file attachments – in favour of the traditional method of simply including a URL to their wares.
 
Encouragingly, the proportion of phishing attacks dropped in July to 57 per cent, down from 69 per cent in June.
 
In the virus charts, Mytob hangs on to the top ten by its fingernails, registering in ninth position; while Agent.sqt leads the pack in the Trojan chart.
 
When it comes to intrusions, Korea once again tops the chart. The country was accountable for more than a quarter (26.5 per cent) of all intrusions in July, representing a negligible drop of (0.3 per cent) on last month’s figure.
 
Simon Heron, Internet Security Analyst at Network Box, comments:

In  2004, between 50 and 60 per cent of spam was coming from the USA.  Now we see it being overtaken by Russia, Europe and China. The USA still has a huge number of consumer PCs that are compromised and forming part of botnets.  However, with the huge take up of broadband in Russian, Europe and China, it is likely that these geographical areas will catch up with the USA and probably overtake it.  Less mature consumer markets tend to be less savvy when it comes to computer protection and hence will be more open to infection.