September 27, 2016

McAfree has detected 1.5 million new malware samples in the last three months

(LiveHacking.Com) – The amount of malware software (including viruses and trojans) has seen its single biggest increase in that last four years according to the new  McAfee Threats Report: Second Quarter 2012.  McAfee Labs says it has detected a 1.5 million increase in malware in the last three months and has seen malware writers becoming more sophisticated with the appearance of new threats such as mobile drive-by downloads, the use of Twitter to control of mobile botnets, and the appearance of mobile ‘ransomware’.

This means that there are 100,000 new bits of malware discovered every day and McAfee predicts that at this rate it will almost certainly see 100 million samples by next quarter and possibly the first 10-million-sample quarter.

“Over the last quarter we have seen prime examples of malware that impacted consumers, businesses, and critical infrastructure facilities,” said Vincent Weafer, senior vice president of McAfee Labs. “Attacks that we’ve traditionally seen on PCs are now making their way to other devices. For example, in Q2 we saw Flashback, which targeted Macintosh devices and techniques such as ransomware and drive-by downloads targeting mobile. This report highlights the need for protection on all devices that may be used to access the Internet.”

Android continue to be a popular target for malware writers. Virtually all new mobile malware detected in the last three months was written for Android. Mobile malware is growing in its sophistication and the full gamut of malware types now exists including SMS-sending malware, mobile botnets, spyware and destructive Trojans.

Other types of popular malware, this time aimed at the PC, include Fake Anti Virus (bogus security software), AutoRun, and password-stealing Trojans. The number of Fake AV malware grew slightly but the overall trend is still down. However AutoRun and password-stealing malware showed significant growth this quarter.

There were nearly 1.2 million new AutoRun samples the quarter and nearly 1.6 million new Password-stealing malware samples. AutoRun worms spread via USB flash drives by executing code embedded in AutoRun files, while Password-stealing malware is designed to collect account names and passwords, so an attacker carry out identity fraud.

You learn more about the rise in malware in the full copy of the McAfee Threats Report: Second Quarter 2012

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