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Philippines among the most vulnerable countries to mobile malware: Kaspersky

Adrian M. Reodique | June 28, 2016
China topped the list with highest number of detected mobile malware infections.

Philippines has the seventh highest number of detected mobile malware infections in the first quarter of 2016 (Q1 2016), according to the data from Kaspersky Security Network (KSN).

The data showed 15.7 percent, which is equivalent to almost two in every 10 users of Kaspersky Lab security solutions in the country, faced a mobile threat during Q1 2016.

"With 119 million Filipino mobile phone subscribers, it is not surprising that the Philippines is now among the top 10 most attacked countries with mobile malware among 213 nations included in Kaspersky Security Network. The main goal of cybercriminals is to earn, and with millions of active smartphone users in the country, the Philippines is like an overflowing pot of gold," said Anthony Chua, Territory Channel Manager for the Philippines and Singapore at Kaspersky Lab Southeast Asia.

"We are publishing these numbers to encourage awareness; not to cast fear. It is high time for Filipino mobile users to think about security. Protect your mobile devices not because of dread for the cybercriminals' stealthy attacks. Do it for yourself, to secure your data, your privacy and your money. Because once your devices are infected, you will be the biggest losers and the online criminals the highest gainers," explained Chua.

China topped the list with most detected mobile malware infections.

Other countries included in the top 10 list are Bangladesh (28 percent), Uzbekistan (21 percent), Algeria (17.6 percent), Nigeria (17.4 percent), India (17 percent), Indonesia (15.6 percent), Ukraine (15 percent), and Malaysia (14 percent). KSN said these countries are mostly attacked by adware - an "unwanted" software that displays advertisements and collect data about the user's behaviour.

Globally, the KSN found over 2 million mobile malware in the first quarter of 2016, which is 11 times higher than the last quarter of 2015.

The number of new mobile ransomware detected has also increased from 1,984 in the fourth quarter of 2015 to 2,895 in the first three months of this year.

Meanwhile, KSN reported adware is the leading mobile malware threat in the first quarter of 2016 with 42.7 percent, a 13 percentage point increase from the last quarter.  

SMS Trojan came in second with 20.5 percent. SMS Trojan steals money to users by sending text messages from mobile device to premium rate phone numbers. Trojan spyware programmes followed on third with 10 percent. These programmes steal the personal data of users by spying on their device.


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