Spam Is The Dominant Method To Spread Malware In 2018

Aadhya Khatri - Dec 14, 2018

Spam Is The Dominant Method To Spread Malware In 2018

Spam was the most common way to infect malware in 2018. Mostly because the cybercriminals are running out of choices.

On Tuesday, F-Secure, a cybersecurity company based in Helsinki announced that when it comes to spreading malware, spam was the most common method. It made up 90% of all cybercriminal’s attempt in 2018.

The report also points out that the malware often comes in the form of shopping invoices or delivery notifications, which is especially effective when major holidays draw closer.

According to Adam Sheehan, Leader of F-Secure’s Behavioral Science, this time of year is a sensitive period as a lot more people are more open to this form of spam. They do not even perceive it as spammy at all.

Email Spam
Spam is on the rise

The tests F-Secure carried out show that 39% more receivers click on the phishing emails than usual if these emails are sent around holidays.

About 69% of the infection attempts try to trick people into clicking on an URL, downloading a file with malware in it, or anything that can lead to the invasion of malicious software into user’s devices. The remaining 31% is attachments.

The report also contains information on the types of malware that were spread this year. 52% of them are bots, backdoors, and downloaders, 42% are banking Trojans, and the rest is ransomware. The malware families that are the most common-seen in spam this year include Trickbot, Panda, and Emotet banking Trojans.

The reason why spam is making a comeback comes down to the fact that while other methods are losing their effectiveness, spam is becoming more and more successful.

Cybercriminals are getting better at manipulating user’s psychology by disguising the malware as something recipients would want to open. It can be an email that is seemingly sent by someone they know or contain a call to action that gives a sense of urgency.

Cybercriminals are getting better at manipulating now than they used to be

When Adobe Flash was no longer the most popular plugin on the internet, the demise of drive-by downloaders was predicted, forcing cybercriminals to rely more on spammy emails.


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