100 percent rise in malware

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This article appeared in the 23rd June, 2008 issue of CRN magazine.

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Having been in the job just over a year, Dave DeWalt, president and CEO of McAfee, visited Australia to discuss the APAC region’s security threat landscape. The statistics he explained were pretty amazing, did you know that in 2007 40 percent of all malware was written that year? So basically in the history of computing, 40 percent of malware occurred just last year.

“We saw more than a 60 percent increase year-over-year from 2006 to 2007 and we are expecting to see almost a 100 percent increase from 2007 to 2008. The current trends, only six months into it, is that we are seeing a doubling from 2007 to 2008 in the amount of malware that we receive,” said DeWalt.

This probably comes as no surprise to anyone that has checked their spam filter lately. He also highlighted key issues such as data loss and identity fraud.

“In so many ways it’s the educational side that is evolving so dramatically that many of the consumers just don’t understand the new threat landscape that’s occurring for them until they’ve experienced it themselves,” said DeWalt.

Does this mean that Australian consumers and businesses aren’t aware that they continuously need to update their security processes? You’d think it would start to break through to the smaller end of the SMB market that their security policy should extend beyond their anti-virus. Alot of education still needs to be done in this space. That’s not to say that anti-virus should be considered any less valuabe. As DeWalt pointed out, USBs can be infected and anti-virus should always be run before you load any files onto your computer. How many businesses have prevention methods in place to make sure employees do that?

Helen

hfrost@crn.com.au
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