Spam rates are rising while cyber threats such as viruses and phishing attacks are shifting from traditional methods to more targeted attacks, according to a report from security firm MessageLabs.
The global ratio of spam in email traffic rose to 64.8 per cent in June, an increase of 6.9 per cent over the previous month.
'The increased convergence of threats across email, web, and instant messaging combined with the increased sophistication of techniques is an interesting new development,' said Mark Sunner, chief technology officer at MessageLabs.
'Today, we see a growing number of emails and Instant Messages containing links to websites where malware or spyware is automatically downloaded, as opposed to the traditional method where the message itself has a piece of malware attached.
'So, a harmless looking email can quickly become a web threat,' he said.