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Wednesday, Oct 16th

No sign of malware storm abating

No sign of malware storm abating.

More than a quarter of all malware samples ever recorded were produced in 2015, according to the Pandalabs Report for 2015 released by IT security firm Panda Security Laboratory.

In a media release the company states that more than 84 million new malware samples were detected and neutralised during 2015, 9 million more than the previous year. The figure indicates that there were 230,000 new malware samples produced daily over the course of the year.

"Last year saw the greatest number of cyberattacks recorded around the world, with a total of 304 million samples, meaning that more than a quarter of all malware samples ever recorded were produced in 2015 (27.63%).

It was also a difficult year for multinational companies many of whom suffered large scale data theft and interference on their IT systems," the company explained in its release.

"Growth of malware will continue in 2016", says Jeremy Matthews MD of Panda Security Africa, "as monetisation remains a driving force behind the development of malware. Sophisticated programming techniques and automation are used to increase exponentially unique variants of malware".

Most destructive malware

The company says in 2015 Trojans, PUPs (Potentially Unwanted Programs) and distinct families of Ransomware spread fear among larger businesses worldwide through massive attacks and the theft of thousands of confidential files.

"Trojans continued to be the main source of malware (51.45) comfortably ahead of the rest of the collected samples: viruses - 22.79%, worms - 13.22%, PUPs - 10.71%, and cases of Spyware - 1.83%. In addition, Trojans caused the largest infections worldwide at 60.3%. PUPs were also particularly harmful, with nearly a third of infections resorting to trick techniques to fully enter the targeted PCs, far ahead of Adware / Spyware - 5.19%, worms - 2.98%, and viruses - 2.55%," says Panda Security.

Aside from Trojans, Ransomware was the most common form of cyberattack throughout the year.

According to Matthews, "Ransomware is favoured by cybercriminals, as it is one of the easiest ways to make a profit. It has shown itself to be very effective, especially as experience indicates that businesses are quick to pay cybercriminals to recover their stolen information".

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