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Monday, April 21st, 2014

Information security threats

Spammers gravitate to more newsy events

With the 2010 Football World Cup over, spammers shifted their messaging to match that of the global news cycle. The focus in July was on the US Gulf Oil spill.

Last month Symantec’s State of Spam and Phishing Report featured a new component called “Spam Street Journal”. The Journal collects news headlines from multiple media outlets and compares them with subject lines seen in Symantec’s Global Intelligence Network.

Using a proprietary algorithm, the analysis provides a ranking based on several factors including resemblance to the news headline as well as volume of messages seen with the subject line.

When the 2010 FIFA World Cup was in full force in June, subject lines related to World Cup news headlines dominated the rankings on Spam Street Journal, taking 8 of the top 10 spots. In July, however, we saw a turnaround with the focus shifting back to other current events like the oil spill and the economy.

The ICC 2011 Cricket World cup begins in early 2011 and phishers have not wasted any time in launching their attacks against worldwide cricket fans.

To read Symantec's full report, please download from the link above.