The proportion of Trojans as an overall share of malware detected leaped nearly 41% year on year during 2020, according to Kaspersky’s annual cybersecurity statistics bulletin.
Kaspersky uncovered 360,000 new malicious files every day on average during the 12-month period, a rise of 5.2% from the previous year — with Trojans and backdoor threats a growing share of the total.
Denis Staforkin, security expert at Kaspersky, added that users worldwide spent more time on their devices and online due to the pandemic.
“It’s hard to know whether attackers were more active or our solutions detected more malicious files simply because of greater activity. It could be a combination of both,” Staforkin said in the Kaspersky announcement.
“Either way, we have registered a noticeable increase in the number of new malicious files this year, and this will most likely continue going into 2021 as employees continue to work from home and countries implement different restrictions.”
About 90% of malicious files detected by Kaspersky were in Windows PE files. New malware related to Android OSes, however, declined by 14% and adware by 35%.
Kaspersky believes the Android decline could be because more workers and students at home would be using computers and laptops, so that’s where attackers were focused.
The vendor also discovered a 27% increase in the number of different scripts sent via malicious email campaigns or encountered on infected websites, and a rise in worms written in VisualBasicScript, such as those in the Dinihou malware family.
Currently, scammers are increasingly looking to take more advantage of weak best practice on security via phishing based online shopping and delivery payment frauds, as a result of people working from home and making more online purchases — often failing to keep track of expected parcels.
“If you place so many orders that you cannot remember them all, keep a running file or jot down a list of orders you have outstanding,” the vendor advised.
Users should stay alert for any suspicious files, attachments and emails. Double-check the origin of emails or messages before downloading files or sending out personal or corporate information, Kaspersky recommends adoption of robust, regularly updated security solutions.