Daily discovery of new malicious files increases by 5.7% to 380,000 in 2021

In 2021, Kaspersky’s detection systems discovered 380,000 malicious files per day, which indicates an increase of 5.7% compared to 2020.

This growth is related to the continuous increase in the number of devices used worldwide, among other factors. This is one of the trends noted by “Kaspersky Security Bulletin: Statistical Report of the Year”.

Kaspersky detection systems discovered an average of 380,000 new malicious files daily during the last 12 months, reflecting an increase of 20,000 compared to the previous year. Traditionally, most threats (91%) occurred through WindowsPE files – a file format specific to Windows operating systems. However, in 2021, cybercriminals started spreading threats associated with the Linux operating system more frequently than ever before. As a result, the number of detected Linux malware and unwanted software increased by 57%.

More than half (54%) of threats detected by Kaspersky systems were unspecified Trojans. While many types of threats reflected a decrease in volume in 2021 compared to 2020, Trojan Droppers grew by 2.24% compared to 2020. This type of malware is particularly dangerous as these programs are designed to deliver malware more sophisticated to a victim’s device. There was also a considerable increase in the number of Worms detected (117.5%), reaching 9% – this type of malware can self-replicate and propagate independently. Finally, viruses grew by 27%, increasing their reach to 10%.

Over the past year, we have discovered more than 20,000 malicious files a day compared to the previous year. This was not unexpected – online activity is still at its peak due to remote work being adopted around the world. In addition, the big shift to online operations also means that more devices are being used worldwide. This leads to a wider attack surface and, consequently, greater exposure to threats. Therefore, improving digital literacy and keeping security solutions up to date are two extremely important tasks for contemporary users.“, comments Denis Staforkin, a security expert at Kaspersky.

The “Statistical Report of the Year” is part of the Kaspersky Security Bulletin (KSB) – an annual series of forecasts and analytical reports on key changes in the cybersecurity world. Click here to learn more about KSB.

To promote your security, Kaspersky recommends:

  • Do not download and install applications from untrusted sources;
  • Do not click on links from unknown sources or suspicious online advertisements;
  • Create strong and unique passwords, including a mix of lowercase and uppercase letters, numbers and punctuation, as well as enable two-factor authentication;
  • Always install updates. Some of them may contain fixes for critical security issues;
  • Ignore messages asking to disable security systems for office software or cybersecurity;
  • Use a robust security solution suitable for your types of system and devices, such as Kaspersky Internet Security or Kaspersky Security Cloud. You can find out which websites should not be opened and stay safe from malware.

To ensure the security of organizations, Kaspersky recommends:

  • Always keep software updated on all devices to prevent cybercriminals from infiltrating your network, seeking to exploit vulnerabilities.
  • Establish the practice of using strong passwords to access corporate services. Use multi-factor authentication to access remote services.
  • Choose a proven endpoint security solution, such as Kaspersky Endpoint Security for Business, that is equipped with behaviour-based detection and anomaly control capabilities for effective protection against known and unknown threats.
  • Use a dedicated suite for effective endpoint protection, threat detection and response products to timely detect and remediate new and elusive threats. Kaspersky Optimum Framework includes the essential endpoint protection suite with EDR and MDR capability.

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