Australians more susceptible to ransomware, banking attacks than other countries

Australia continues to punch well above its weight when it comes to falling victim to ransomware, according to recently released figures from Trend Micro.

Residents of Australia, with its population of just 23 million, accounted for 5 percent of ransomware incidents recorded in Trend's 1Q 2014 Security Roundup, with the notorious CryptoLocker leading the charge and relative newcomer BitCrypt posting a strong showing in its wake.

By contrast, Germany – population 82 million – accounted for just 4 percent of ransomware infections and France, with 66 million, just 2 percent.

Despite being the fifth most-affected country in the study, Australia's population is just a fraction of those countries posting higher figures – including the United States (314 million) with 28 percent of attacks; Japan (128 million) with 22 percent; India (1.2 billion) with 9 percent; and Turkey (74 million) with 8 percent of attacks.

Improved information on banking, ransomware and other attacks is emerging thanks to better information gathering as security vendors bolster their portfolios of cloud-based data collection and analytics tools in an effort to target ransomware, banking and other malware.

IBM, for example, gained improved financial-fraud detection capabilities with its acquisition of Trusteer, an Israeli startup whose technology will be used to bolster defences against banking and other forms of malware.

That acquisition brought “a couple of very unique products that focused specifically on protecting end users,” director of the IBM Institute for Advanced Security Glen Gooding recently told CSO Australia. “That integrated capability will help us distil a bunch of security events coming across the network, into actionable items.”

Those capabilities will be important in other areas, too, as Australia also posted strong results, on a population basis, in other Trend Micro metrics.

For example, it ranked in the top ten in terms of the number of botnet command-and-control servers (600, compared to 12,100 in the UK and 10,600 in the US) and predisposition to online banking malware.

Australians accounted for 3 percent of online banking malware attacks, on par with more-populous countries like France, Malaysia, Mexico, and Vietnam. That corresponded to around 1085 individual incidents during the quarter.

This article is brought to you by Enex TestLab, content directors for CSO Australia.

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Tags trend microbankingTrusteerGlen Gooding

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