Trojans dominate new attacks in 2010


Almost two-thirds (60 per cent) of new cyber threats that emerged over the past three months were trojans, according to a new report.

The Panda Security Q1 2010 report showed 61 per cent of the new attacks were down to this specific type of malware, meaning the number of computers infected went into the millions.

An executive from the research firm was unsurprised by this large figure.

"The [number] is more or less the average and I have even seen higher," said Luis Corrons, technical director of PandaLabs.

"In the last two years trojans have been the most prevalent and this will continue."

Corrons claimed the main reason for trojans topping the list of new infections was that it is the best technique for cyber criminals to use to extract information from their victims.

Yet this threat is not the only thing online users have to worry about.

"When excluding trojans, fake anti-virus programs are the other most prevalent [type] of attack," Corrons added.

"The criminals can just sit down and wait for innocent users to pay for and download the program and watch the [money] growing."

As ever, the key to keeping your computer safe is keeping antivirus programs up to date, but Corrons warned that other steps must be taken to ensure your machine is clean.

He said that users need to keep all of their software up to date, from the operating system to the browser, and also use more common sense while surfing the web.

"You have to take [these] other measures otherwise it is like leaving your house and locking the door but leaving the window open," he said.

"If you don't have these security holes it will be a lot harder for cyber criminals to break in."

Jennifer Scott

Jennifer Scott is a former freelance journalist and currently political reporter for Sky News. She has a varied writing history, having started her career at Dennis Publishing, working in various roles across its business technology titles, including ITPro. Jennifer has specialised in a number of areas over the years and has produced a wealth of content for ITPro, focusing largely on data storage, networking, cloud computing, and telecommunications.

Most recently Jennifer has turned her skills to the political sphere and broadcast journalism, where she has worked for the BBC as a political reporter, before moving to Sky News.