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Trojans Make Up 80 Percent Of All New Malware

China has the most infected PCs in the world, and 6 million new pieces of malware appeared in Q1 2012, new PandaLabs report says

If it's malware, it's more than likely a Trojan: New data found that four out of five new malware samples are Trojan programs, and there were 6 million new pieces of malware created in the first quarter of this year alone.

Last year, Trojans represented about 73 percent of all malware, according to PandaLabs' Quarterly Report for Q1. Worms were the second-most common form of malware in the first quarter of this year at 9.3 percent, followed by viruses at 6.43 percent, adware (2.89 percent), and other malware 0.6 percent).

Worms were the cause of just 8 percent of all infections, while Trojans have become the more popular tool for attackers, causing 66.3 percent of all infections worldwide, according to the report.

Worldwide, the average number of infected PCs is 35.51 percent, a drop of 3 percent since 2011. China is home to the most infected PCs, with 54.1 percent of its desktops infected, followed by Thailand (47.15 percent) and Turkey (42.75 percent). European nations tend to have the fewest infected machines, with Sweden as the cleanest, with less than 20 percent infected computers. Japan has less than 30 percent of its computers infected.

An attack called the "police virus" this year that uses international law enforcement agency logos in its emails spiked the number of ransomware attacks in the first quarter. If a user falls for the phony threat, they must pay a fine for visiting inappropriate websites or performing illegal downloads to "unlock" their supposedly locked computers.

"Although it's still early in the year, so far what we have seen in 2012 is a continuation of past trends. Cybercriminals are still trying to steal users' information and money by any means possible," said Luis Corrons, technical director of PandaLabs.

The full PandaLabs report is available here for download.

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Kelly Jackson Higgins is the Executive Editor of Dark Reading. She is an award-winning veteran technology and business journalist with more than two decades of experience in reporting and editing for various publications, including Network Computing, Secure Enterprise ... View Full Bio


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