Cisco Systems’ first-half review of the most common and frustrating malware unearthed a number of old standards (Trojans, iframes and worms) that are still driving IT administrators nuts and putting enterprise and consumer data at risk.
But as eSecurity Planet reports, hackers and malware maestros are really zeroing in on search engine optimization scams that often defy basic security software applications and are equal parts damaging and realistic in appearance.
Browser phishing filters, anti-malware engines, and up-to-date patches can play a huge role in defeating malware reaching the desktop. However, to find unguarded vectors and unpatched vulnerabilities, let’s look at how today’s most prevalent Web malware works.
Websites that spread malware may be leveling off, but Web-borne malware encounters are still growing. According to a 2Q10 Global Threat Report 2Q10 published by Cisco, criminals are using search engine optimization and social engineering to become more efficient, luring more targeted victims to fewer URLs.
Using IronPort SenderBase, Cisco estimated that search engine queries lead to 74 percent of Web malware encounters in 1Q10. Fortunately, two-thirds of those encounters either did not deliver exploit code or were blocked.
But that means 35 percent of Web-borne exploits are still reaching browsers, where they try to drop files, steal information, propagate themselves, or await further instructions.