One in five search topics lead to malware, security firm Barracuda Networks has stated in its 2010 Annual Security Report, released today.
The levels of malware found daily increased by 55 per cent in the second half of the year.
In June, Google was found to contain 69 per cent of the search engine malware. By December, that number decreased to 38 per cent, showing that attackers have not only increased the amount of overall search engine malware but are also targeting a wider variety of search engines.
Besides Google, Barracuda analysed results from Bing, Twitter and Yahoo.
To come up with these results, the security vendor searched the web using key words from popular trending topics. It then analysed the sites returned in the results for malicious code. Cyber criminals use these hot topics to encourage more users to click on their links.
"Attackers focus on where they can get the most eyeballs and profit, and today that means social networks and search engines," said Paul Judge, chief research officer at Barracuda Networks.
Over 157,000 trending topics and nearly 37 million search results were analysed for the report.
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