Emerging Threats

Latest Cyberthreat Intelligence for January

Authored by a Symantec employee


Symantec’s Global Intelligence Network (GIN) team has updated their intelligence page, which provides the most up-to-date analysis of cybersecurity threats, trends, and insights concerning malware, spam, and other potentially harmful risks. The GIN is a respected source of data and analysis for global cybersecurity threats, trends and insights. Symantec regularly publishes informed analyses based on the latest GIN data available. Here are some key takeaways from this latest batch of intelligence.

There is good news and there is bad news. The good news is there is a decrease in the number of spear-phishing activities. The bad news is there is an increase in social media scams.

In terms of social media, manually shared scams continued to dominate and made up nearly 56 percent of all social media scams. However, this number is down from 64.9 percent in December. The reason for the dip is a significant increase in the number of fake offers seen on social media in January, accounting for around 38.6 percent of social media scams. This number is up more than 11 percentage points from December.

Social media scams in January 2016

Retail trade topped the industry spam rates at 59.4 percent, saw phishing rates at one in 507 emails, and one in every 57 emails in this sector contained malware. One silver lining is that targeted attacks were down slightly for retail trade, from 3.6 percent in December to 2.2 percent for January.

Email malware by industry in January 2016

Spear-phishing activity is down once again this month, at 16.7 attacks per day, after reaching a 12-month high in November. However, the finance, insurance, & real estate sector saw an increase to 40.2 percent from these types of attacks, up from 24.6 percent in December.

OSX.CnetDownloader was again the most commonly blocked Mac OS X threat on OS X devices, accounting for 60.4 percent, though its dominance may be waning. January saw a surge in detections of OSX.Klog.A. This threat made up 4.2 percent of blocked OS X threats in December, but is now responsible for 23.5 percent.

These are just a few items that stood out during the month. Be sure to check out the Latest Intelligence for January 2016 for more charts, tables, and analysis covering the threat landscape.

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