Science

Spam email down below 50%, 1st time in a decade

The level of spam has fallen to less than 50 per cent of the total volume of email, for the first time in more than a decade, according to security firm Symantec.

Cyber scam artists creating more malware variants, ransomware

Symantec says the drop in the level of junk, or spam, emails suggests cybercriminals are looking to other ways to make money on the internet.

The level of spam has fallen to less than 50 per cent of the total volume of email, for the first time in more than a decade, according to security firm Symantec.

The last time Symantec recorded a similar spam rate was back in September of 2003.

Its Intelligence Report for June said the overall email spam rate has dropped to 49.7 per cent.

Symantec largely credits action taken against botnets, networks of private computers set up to forward deluge of spam or viruses.

Many of the unwanted messages have also been blocked from inboxes by improved filtering.

The report said the rate for phishing attacks and email-based malware were also down in June, a development that suggests "attacks are simply moving to other areas of the threat landscape."

Cybercriminals created more new malware variants in June than the previous two months.

In addition, ransomware attacks were up in June. This is a malicious malware program that can seize a computer so that files can no longer be accessed. Cybercriminals demand money to unlock the files.

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