Emerging markets in Asia Pacific vulnerable to malware

Anuradha Shukla


The Asia Pacific markets, especially the emerging ones, are among those at the highest risk of cybersecurity threats, according to Microsoft's newly released Security Intelligence Report Volume 21.

Vietnam and Indonesia were two out of the top five locations across the globe to be the most at risk of infection.

Both these locations have a malware encounter rate of more than 45 percent in the second quarter of 2016.

Other top markets under malware threats include large developing markets and Southeast Asia countries including Philippines and India.

"With increasing malware encounters and sophistication of cyberattacks, cybersecurity is becoming a mission critical priority for most organisations," said Keshav Dhakad, regional director, Digital Crimes Unit (DCU), Microsoft Asia.

Diverse cybersecurity landscape
Markets in the region with higher levels of IT maturity such as Japan, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Hong Kong and Singapore have displayed malware encounter rates that are below the global average.

This highlights the diverse cybersecurity landscape in the Asia Pacific. The top most encountered malicious software families in Asia Pacific include Gamarue, Lodbak and Dynamer.

Gamarue can give a malicious hacker control of your PC; Lodbak, a Trojan, attempts to install Gamarue when the infected removable drive is connected to a computer; and Dynamer can steal personal information, download more malware or give hackers access to computers.

The report advises security teams to keep abreast of changes in the threat landscape brought about by emergence of cloud computing.

"With no sign of abatement in the future, what companies need is a Secure Modern Enterprise posture, which involves well-integrated "Protect-Detect-Respond" investments and capabilities, with a strategic focus on the core pillars - Identity, Apps, Data, Infrastructure and  Devices," added Dhakad. "Additionally, organisations should also strongly consider adopting trusted cloud-based services to enjoy the highest levels of data protection, leveraging the cloud provider's enterprise-grade security and privacy expertise, assurances and certifications."