17 Sep 2010

Malware hits all-time high

Websites infected with malware have never been as common as they were in the second quarter of this year, according to a recent survey.

An internet security company found the number of websites infected with malware topped out at 1.3 million in the second quarter. It's the first time ever the number eclipsed the 1 million mark. Additionally, 58,000 new threats were detected, bringing the internet security company's database to about 200,000 unique threats.

And the method by which cyber criminals execute their malware campaigns has improved, the study found. Hackers are increasingly launching new malware on Fridays, because they know IT activity tends to slow over the weekend.

"They can make the campaign last longer by starting it right before a weekend," said an internet security expert.

Malware attacks are aimed at Chinese web users 17.1 percent of the time, according to a study of second quarter threats conducted by an internet security company. That is tops on the list in terms of the most-targeted countries. Russia is second at 11.4 percent, followed by India in third at 9.3 percent and the U.S. in fourth at 6 percent.