Dell: Surge In SSL Traffic Helping Malware Authors

The surge in the use of SSL traffic -- the encrypted traffic between web browsers and web sites and apps -- is actually hurting, not helping security, according to a report from Dell. Dell said in its Dell Security Annual Threat Report, that there has been a 50 percent surge in encrypted traffic, which it says is being used by cybercriminals to conceal malware from firewalls. Dell said that it found that SSL/TLS encryption was 64.6 percent of web hits, in part driven by that malware activity. Dell's SonicWALL producst are used for network traffic security and monitoring. The company said other points of activity in 2015 were a rise in the number of "exploit kits" used by attackers to target zero day vulnerabilities, more Android malware, and "marked increase" in the number of malware attacks. Encrypted SSL/TLS traffic is much more difficult for firewalls to inspect and block.