E-mail threats, viruses worsen in 2002: security vendor

Viruses, spam and malicious Internet scams transmitted by e-mail all grew sharply in 2002, posing a threat to the smooth running of worldwide e-mail systems, according to security vendor MessageLabs Ltd.

The problem of spam, or unsolicited e-mail, has become so bad that the number of spam e-mails being received will exceed the number of legitimate e-mails next year, MessageLabs said in a statement Wednesday.

In its review of e-mail threats in 2002, MessageLabs reported that:

-- Spam now accounts for 30 percent of all e-mail and is set to rise above 50 percent in July next year.

-- One virus was sent for each 212 e-mails in 2002, compared with one virus per 380 e-mails in 2001. This upward trend is expected to continue.

-- Technical sophistication of viruses continues to increase, exposing weaknesses in traditional anti-virus software.

-- Blended threats, where spam e-mails are combined with viruses, showed sharp growth in 2002.

-- Trojans, or attacks targeted at companies and individuals, rose sharply in 2002.

-- Malicious scams, such as the Nigerian e-mail advance fee scam are continuing to proliferate and prosper. The Nigerian advance fee, or 419, scam is expected to gross US$2 billion in 2003, making it that country's second-largest industry.

MessageLabs will detail possible responses to these threats on Thursday at the Information Security Conference in New York.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

David Legard

PC World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?