Global spam declines as malware encounters pick up: report

Summary:Enterprise users experienced an average of 339 malware encounters online per month during the last quarter of 2011, according to Cisco.

Global spam volumes continued to decline throughout 2011, but web malware encounters appear to be growing steadily, according to new research from Cisco.

The Cisco 4Q11 Global Threat Report, which covers the period between October 1 and December 31, 2011, found that enterprise users experienced an average of 339 malware encounters online per month during the fourth quarter.

Part of the serious danger here is that 33 percent of those attacks were using zero-day malware, which were not detectable by "traditional signature-based methodologies at the time of encounter."

For the year overall, Cisco tracked an average of 20,141 unique web malware hosts encountered per month in 2011 -- compared to a monthly average of 14,217 in 2010.

The average per month in 2011 was 362 web malware encounters, and the peak amounts were found in September and October at 698 and 697 encounters on average per enterprise, respectively.

Denial-of-service events also increased slightly over the course of the fourth quarter, while the number of SQL injection signature events stayed steady.

A full copy of the Cisco 4Q11 Global Threat Report can be downloaded now.

Another branch of Cisco also released a report today that revealed nearly half of IT managers and executives polled in six leading economies said they would never let employees bring their own devices to work -- mainly due to security issues.


Topics: Security, Cisco


Rachel King is a staff writer for CBS Interactive based in San Francisco, covering business and enterprise technology for ZDNet, CNET and SmartPlanet. She has previously worked for The Business Insider,, CNN's San Francisco bureau and the U.S. Department of State. Rachel has also written for, Irish Americ... Full Bio

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