PandaLabs Identified 227,000 New Malware Samples Everyday in Q1 2016

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Data reveals that 33% of computers worldwide are infected

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Hackers are proving to be resilient criminals. Companies and individuals need to take cyber-security seriously to protect their data - Luis Corrons, PandaLabs technical director

PandaLabs, Panda Security's anti-malware laboratory, has published its Quarterly Report for Q1, analyzing the IT security events and incidents from January through March 2016. The multinational security vendor detected more than 227,000 new malware strains per day in the first quarter of the year, a higher number than last year (225,000). Trojans were the most common infection type (65.89%) followed by potentially unwanted programs (PUPs) (25.12%). The report can be found here: PandaLabs Quarterly Report Q1 2016.

As is often the case, most of these specimens were variants of known malware conveniently modified by virus writers to evade detection by antivirus laboratories. Trojans continued to be the most common new threat type, representing 66.81%of all new malware, followed by viruses (15.98%), worms (11.01%), PUPs (4.22%) and Adware/Spyware at (1.98%). The average number of infected PCs across the globe stands at 33.32%, a figure down from 2015, but still a remarkable high number. China once again led this ranking (51.35% of infected PCs), followed by Turkey (48.02%) and Taiwan (41.24%).

When analyzing these malware infections on a global level, PandaLabs found there has been a rise of ransomware infections that are grouped in with Trojans. Ransomware is the most popular attack for cyber-criminals because it allows them to obtain money easily and securely. More companies are falling victim to these attacks, and are paying millions of dollars to retrieve their stolen information.

Ransomware distribution has increased during this quarter, and PandaLabs identified cases where cyber-criminals have even used top of the line websites (The New York Times, BBC, MSN, AOL, etc.) to infect visitors. PandaLabs also identifies the growing trend of attacks on mobile phones and the Internet of Things. The report even details how “smart cars,” are being affected by cyber-crime.

“Our Q1 report displayed alarming numbers indicating that ransomware is showing no signs of slowing down, and malware is once again on the rise,” said PandaLabs technical director Luis Corrons. “Hackers are proving to be resilient criminals. Companies and individuals need to take cyber-security seriously to protect their data.”

The Q1 Report also details jarring cyber-crime trends including hacks on hotels, hospitals, Verizon, and Mattel. PandaLabs recently published “The Hotel Hijackers,” a report detailing major cyber-attacks on the hospitality sector.

"This has been a tough year for cyber-crime thus far. We will continue to monitor the evolution of ransomware. It is here to stay,” concluded Corrons. “We’ll also heavily monitor mobile phone and IoT activity, the clear wave of the future.”

The full report is available here.

About Panda Security
Founded in 1990, Panda Security is the world's leading cloud-based security solutions company. Based in Spain, the company has a direct presence in over 80 countries, products translated into more than 23 languages and millions of users worldwide. Its mission is to simplify the complexity by creating new and better solutions to safeguard the digital life of its users. http://www.pandasecurity.com/usa/.

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Tim Hamilton
Panda Security
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