That Damned Spam: It Grew In The Third Quarter, Kaspersky Says

The United States is the source of almost a tenth of the world’s spam. But it fell from second to third place in the third quarter, lagging behind China and Vietnam, according to Kaspersky Lab. 

And for all the reports about ransomware attacks, the U.S. doesn’t even rank in the top ten of victimhood: Brazil claims that distinction. 

That doesn’t mean you should suspend worry. There’s plenty of spam — everywhere. 

In September, 59.56% of all email was spam, according to Kaspersky. And the average for the quarter was 58.02% — e1.05 percentage points more than the prior quarter.

And these emails made junk mail — the kind that went to the cohort known as “the fools” — look innocent.

For one thing, financial scam artists sent waves of email offering software for trading on the cryptocurrency market. They urged recipients to “secure your financial future,” and those gullible enough to click-through were brought to sites run by shady brokerage houses.



Bad actors also sent more “primitive” offers, in which they asked recipients to transfer bitcoins to a specific wallet, promising to return the money with interest I five days.

The report notes that “only the most active recipients are likely to fall for such an offer 

Nigerian scammers tried to cash in on our recent natural disasters: They sent messages asking for help in collecting inheritances for family members whose relatives died in the events. Some used the name of President Donald Trump, pretending to act on his behalf.

Felons also distributed fake B2B offers containing malicious attachments. Some were so good that “you suspect they could be a man-in-the-middle attack,” Kaspersky writes 

The most widely deployed program was Backdoor.Java.Qrat, which went along with 3.11% of the spam that was sent. Next on this roster was

the Trojan-Downloader.VBS.Agent family (2.95%), and  Trojan-Downloader.JS.SLoad (2.94%).

Then there were some freshly minted programs, like

Trojan.Win32.VBKrypt (2.64%), Trojan-Downloader.VBS.Sload (2.02%) and the Trojan.PDF.Badur family (1.79%)

The report adds that ‘miners’ — malicious payloads that victims downloaded on their computers — were more prevalent in the third quarter.

As for geography, China sent 12.24% of the world’s spam, jumping from third place to the top of the list Vietnam was second, having sent 11.17%. And the U.S. was the source of 9.62%.

Fourth on the list was India (8.49%). Iran, the progenitor of 2.07% of the spam on this planet, rounded off the top ten, Kaspersky writes. 

So who’s getting hit the most by phishing attacks? Here’s the list:



New Zealand—15.61%








That’s one top ten list we should be glad not to be on.


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