Stats confirm that trojans spreading, malware being built at record rates

May 6, 2013 – 5:32 PM

Trojans continue to dominate the threat landscape, according to Panda Security’s latest quarterly report, released Monday.

The anti-virus maker’s research arm, PandaLabs, found that between January and March of this year, more than 6.5 million new malware strains were built, with trojans comprising 75 percent of those. In total, trojans were responsible for 80 percent of global computer infections – a record – far outpacing worms, viruses and adware.

Across the globe, researchers discovered that more than 31 percent of PCs have been seeded with malware, with machines in China experiencing the highest infection rates (around 50 percent). In the United States, PandaLabs said 28 percent of computers are infected nationwide, numbers that roughly correspond to previous versions of the report.

PandaLabs said trojans are particularly effective because of their ability to take advantage of vulnerabilities in commonly deployed third-party software, such as Java or Adobe, and be served through compromised websites. Plus, they often can evade detection.

“This attack method allows hackers to infect thousands of computers in just a few minutes with the same trojan or different ones, as attackers have the ability to change the trojan they use based on multiple parameters, such as the victim’s location, the operating system used, etc.,” according to PandaLabs.


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