Asian countries top malware infected countries in 2012

China, South Korea and Taiwan head the list of those with highest percentage of infected systems, amid drop in global proportion of malware ridden computers from previous year.

The number of infected PCs worldwide decreased in 2012 compared to 2011, but Asian markets such as China, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand registered above global average figures for computers infected with malware.

According to Panda Security's Annual Security Report 2012 released Thursday, 27 million new strains of malware were created last year alone and 74,000 new samples were released every day.

The proportion of infected computers, however, decreased from 38.49 percent in 2011 to 31.98 percent in 2012.

Delving into geographical analysis, China topped the list of countries with 54.89 percent of infected PCs, followed closely by South Korea at 54.15 percent and Taiwan at 42.14 percent. All three countries were the only Asian countries in the top ten list.

Elsewhere in Asia, 35.37 percent of PCs in Thailand were malware-ridden, a figure above the global average, while Japan was below the global average at 26 percent.

malware countries
(Source: Panda Security's Annual Security Report 2012)

More Trojan infections on mobile and PCs in 2012
Trojans also accounted for 76.56 percent of malware infections, compared to 66.18 percent in 2011. This is followed by viruses at 8 percent, worms at 6.44 percent, adwares and spywares at 5.72 percent and other malware at 3.28 percent.

One reason for the growth is the increased use of exploit kits such as Black Hole , which can exploit multiple system vulnerabilities to infect computers automatically without user intervention.

The use of Trojans had also been more rampant on mobile phones, designed to steal data from devices from call and text message records to users' contacts list. One such example had been the "Trojan!MMarketPay.A@Android" which affected 100,000 China Mobile subscribers , and started buying applications from China Mobile's marketplace on behalf of the user.

Other trojans had continued to infect more computers in 2012, such as the Flashback Trojan which infected up to 600,000 Mac computers and SpyEye plugin "flashcamcontrol", which hijacked the Web cam of infected computers.

(Source: Panda Security Annual Security Report 2012)


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