Panda Security
OXYGEN 3, E-bulletin on IT security

"Space is to place as eternity is to time"

Joseph Joubert ( 1754-1824), French Essayist and moralist
(January 3, 1999, NASA laucnhes "Mars Polar Lander" to explore Mars)


The end of McColo

On November 11, North American authorities shut the McColo Internet Service Provider down, as it was used by a large number of cyber-crooks, and its domains were used to control botnets to distribute malware and send spam (directly or indirectly).

From that day on, the amount of spam circulating the Net decreased considerably; spam levels monitored by Panda Security dropped 50-70%.

Apart from lower spam figures, there were also changes in the nature of spam. Up until November 11, the spam distribution in our monitoring systems was as follows: 50% only text (plain and HTML) and 50% emails with attachments (some of which were malware).

From November 11, the spam profile has changed towards the dominance of exclusively text content. From this it can be deduced that McColo was not only an important source of spam, but also of malware distribution, as from that week on, the distribution of certain fake anti-malware families also subsided.

"At PandaLabs, we did not doubt the decrease would be temporary and that alternative ISPs would be used to perpetuate malicious activity. Since then, we have seen spam levels return to normal", explains Luis Corrons, Technical Director of PandaLabs

You can see the levels of the spam at:

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