New Report Sheds Light on the State of Cyber Security and Malware

The year 2019 saw an extraordinary rise in malware attacks, that greatly benefited cyber criminals.

According to a new report from Av-test, over 114,312,703 (114 million) malware applications were developed in 2019, and the rate of this malware spread like a wildfire throughout the internet. Around 1,000,000 spam messages, more than 30,000 apps, 500,000 URLs, more than 3 million files per day were some of the ways through which these malware programs reached and affected people globally, with 4,368,921,256 evaluated records of such mass malware in 2019 alone.

This report also analyzes that if 2019 saw such a massive explosion of malware programs, 2020 is going to be worse! Already, in the first three months of 2020, more than 43 million newly programmed malware applications have been registered by AV-TEST systems. By the end of the year, this figure can reach up to more than 160 million samples!

At the moment, the rate at which these malware programs are being developed is 4.3 samples per second. And this is mind-boggling, especially for the security companies. They already provide a very high level of protection through their security products, but with this rate of multiplication of malware programs, they have to work hard.

In 2019, 78% of malware programs targeted Windows systems, while in the first quarter of 2020, this value has gone up to 83%.

Interestingly, it has been noted that Android and macOS systems are seeing a slight decline in the rate of newly developed malware programs for a couple of years.

For Android, the maximum malware activity occurred in 2017, with 6,201,358 newly programmed samples. In 2019, the value dropped down to 3,170,140. However, sadly, in 2020, the malware attacks have resurfaced and are gaining momentum every second.

For macOS also, in 2018, more than 90,000 newly programmed malware apps were detected, but there was a decline in 2019 with 60,000 remaining threats. However, the malware statistics have remained on the higher side.

In 2020, the additional decline may occur, and a drop-down to 40,000 samples can be anticipated by the end of the year. However, the threat is still there, and the fact that Windows has better security options that Android and macOS cannot be overlooked. However, AV-TEST Institute keeps testing and says that there are many free apps and antivirus solutions for both Android and macOS that can be used, and that can provide a good level of security to the devices.

On the other hand, IoT malware threats (IoT-typical Linux and Unix versions) are exponentially growing.

In 2018, the analysis of new Linux revealed around 188,902 newly programmed malware samples, but in 2019, the AV-TEST systems registered 408,430 new samples, which is more than double. This is increasing in 2020 also, as the rate of Trojans used to infect IoT infrastructure has already gone up from 40 to over 65 percent. The increase in the rate of newly-developed crypto miners has also gone up dramatically.

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