Virus production from Russia increases again

Virus production from Russia is on the up again, after a temporary decline last month when Russian hosting service, PROXIEZ-NET – notoriously used by criminal gangs – was taken down in early May. This is according to analysis of internet threats in June by Network Box.

Russia is now responsible for 7.4 per cent of the world’s malware, and is back to being in the top four virus-producing countries, behind the US (13 per cent), Korea (10.1 per cent) and India (9.2 per cent).

This follows a similar pattern to malware production after the McColo shutdown in the US, in November 2008, when the US’s threat production decreased dramatically temporarily, but was back up to normal levels within a month.

Levels of viruses and spam from the UK remain high. The UK has the dubious honour of being the world’s fourth-largest producer of spam, with 4.1 per cent of spam originating from home shores, the same as last month. This is behind the US (11.1 per cent), India (8.0 per cent) and Brazil (4.2 per cent).

Virus levels from the UK are slightly down from last month (2.9 per cent, down from 5.9 per cent), but this figure results from an increase in production from other countries, notably India (up to 9.2 per cent of viruses from 5.5 per cent last month) and Russia. The US is back at the top spot, overtaking Korea, and is now responsible for 13.6 per cent of the world’s malware (up from 11.6 per cent last month).

Simon Heron, Internet Security Analyst for Network Box, says: “We predicted that Russian malware and spam production would be back up to normal levels this month, and this has proved to be the case. Any efforts to shut down criminal hosting services is to be applauded, it makes life a little harder for those who would prey on others but sadly in the current political climate it doesn’t normally have a long term effect, as the criminals simply go elsewhere.”

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