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Trend Micro blocked 8.8 million Covid-19 related threats in H1 2020

The report shows that globally and within Asia, India ranked third highest accounting for 7.5% of malicious mobile app blocked by Trend Micro.
The report shows that globally and within Asia, India ranked third highest accounting for 7.5% of malicious mobile app blocked by Trend Micro. (Pixabay)

Trend Micro blocked 27.8 billion cyber threats in the first half of 2020, 93% of which were email-borne. Interestingly, with a total of 438 million threats, India ranked third for encountering the highest number of email threats in Asia.

It’s no secret that cybercriminals enhanced cyber attacks in the time of the Covid-19 pandemic to dupe innocent into giving up control of their accounts. Now, a new report says that Trend Micro blocked over 8 million Covid-19 related threats in the first half of 2020.

As per a report by the Japanese cybersecurity firm, it blocked 8.8 million Covid-19 related threats between January and June. Nearly 92% of these attacks were spams that were delivered via emails.

In total, Trend Micro blocked 27.8 billion cyber threats in the first half of 2020, 93% of which were email-borne. Interestingly, with a total of 438 million threats, India ranked third for encountering the highest number of email threats in Asia.

In addition to that, the report shows that globally and within Asia, India ranked third highest accounting for 7.5% of malicious mobile app blocked by Trend Micro. The total number of blocked threats stood at 44,097. The statistics don’t end there. The report shows that the use of Covid-19-themed traps to deliver malware was also common. India ranked third-highest contributing to 4.1% -- 9 million in total -- malware detected by Trend Micro.

Another trend that the cybersecurity firm noticed in the first half of 2020 was ransomware. The report says that although the number of detected ransomware threats decreased, Trend Micro saw a 36% increase in new ransomware families compared to the same time last year. The company also observed a 16% increase in vulnerabilities disclosed in industrial control systems (ICS) compared to the first half of 2019. This could create major challenges for smart factory owners and other organizations running IIoT environments.

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Additionally, the report noted that global organisations have also been burdened by a significant spike in newly disclosed vulnerabilities. Trend Micro’s Zero Day Initiative published a total of 786 advisories, representing a 74% increase from the second half of 2019. Some of these came as part of Microsoft Patch Tuesday updates, which have fixed an average of 103 CVEs per month so far in 2020, including the largest number of patches ever issued in a single month (129) in June.

“The pandemic has dominated all of our lives during the first half of 2020, but it’s not slowing down the cybercriminals,” Nilesh Jain, Vice President, Southeast Asia and India, Trend Micro said on the occasion.

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