Secuirty Researcher B. Endelman reports that 4.4% of current organic search results link to sites rated as “risky” because of the presence of spyware, viruses, junk mail or excessive pop-ups. The study ran searches for 2,500 popular keywords on the major search engines.
Sponsored links are twice as likely to be linked to malware than non-sponsored links.
This highlights a vexing challenge for IT administrators- how to balance the need for information found via search (25% of knowledge worker time is spent searching online for information) with the threats that search poses.
As malicious websites continue to proliferate, robust Web Filtering becomes ever more important to manage IT risk. Filtering must be combined with user education and awareness, however, to ensure adequate protection.