Symantec: Financial malware 2.5 times more prevalent than ransomware

Here’s what the survey revealed

Key findings from Symantec’s research include:

  • UK ranked 8th globally
  • Financial threats are 2.5x more prevalent than ransomware: While ransomware continues to earn the lion’s share of attention (particularly as of late with WannaCry), financial threats are 2.5 times more prevalent with more than 1.2m annual detections.
  • Attacks against financial institutions on the rise: Last year saw the emergence of a handful of sophisticated cyber crime groups going after financial institutions themselves instead of customers. 38 percent of all financial threat detections were against corporations rather than consumers. Even though such attacks are harder to carry out and take longer to prepare, they yield a much higher profit.
  • Japan is the country with the most financial malware infections: Japan saw a spike in infections last year, with 37 per cent of global detections, up from three per cent in 2015 by comparison, the U.S. made up six per cent of global detections. Symantec saw a large increase in financial Trojan detections across Asia with Japan, China and India notably gaining places in the top 10 list. The United Kingdom and Germany were also among the top ten countries targeted globally by financial Trojans. This shows that the attackers are expanding to new markets that are less saturated and less protected.

Symantec

Source: Symantec

Protection:

Businesses and consumers can minimize the chance of infection by adopting a multilayers security approach and following the below advice to reduce the risk of cyber attacks:

  • Exercise caution when conducting online banking sessions, if the behavior or appearance of your bank’s website changes
  • Notify your financial institution of any strange behavior while using their service
  • Exercise caution when receiving unsolicited, unexpected, or suspicious emails
  • Keep security software and operating systems up to date
  • Enable advanced account security features, like 2FA and login notification, if available
  • Use strong passwords for all your accounts
  • Always log out of your session when done
  • Monitor bank statements regularly
  • Be wary of Microsoft Office attachments that prompt users to enable macros
  • Establish enhanced authorization business processes for transactions to avoid falling for BEC scams

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