Caching servers used by leading search engines have become malicious code repositories, according to a report published yesterday.
The study found when the website containing the code is removed, the malicious content it holds remains stored on the caching servers – used by ISPs and leading search engines – leaving businesses vulnerable to spyware, trojans and other security threats.
The report, published by Finjan, also revealed that cyber criminals are increasingly using Web 2.0 platforms to upload their malicious code to popular websites, allowing them to infect online users.
Yuval Ben-Itzhak, Chief Technology Officer at Finjan, said the current URL filtering systems used by businesses fails to block the "trusted" websites hosting the malicious codes. He believes proactive technology – which analyses content rather than its origin web address – is needed.
"This is more than just a theoretical danger. It is possible that storage and caching servers could unintentionally become the largest ‘legitimate' storage venue for malicious code," he said.
"Such infection-by-proxy introduces new risks for businesses where trusted web addresses become a potential distributor of malicious code – making URL Filtering solutions blind.
"The largest threat to corporate users comes from web surfing and current processes to remove such malicious content from the web are simply not going far enough to combat this very serious and growing threat," he added.