In 2008 PandaLabs, the malware research laboratory of Panda Security, detected an average of 35,000 malware samples each day, 22,000 of which were new infections. By end of year, the total count of malware threats detected by the Spanish security vendor exceeded 15 million.Ã‚Â This number surpassed initial projections by over 5 million.
This explosion in malware caused PandaLabs to detect more malware in the first eight months of 2008 than in the company’s previous 17 years combined. The majority of this new malware (67.7%) were classified as Trojans meaning they were designed to steal confidential data such as bank accounts, passwords and the like.
Trojans were the most common malware infections found at 70.1% of total detections, followed by adware at 19.9% and worms at 4.22%. These three types of infections combined represented the majority of malware detected, totaling 94%.
With respect to the threats that have increased the most in 2008, PandaLabs’ annual report highlights the emergence of rogue antivirus programs. Rogue antimalware programs are a special type of adware that trick the computer user into believing they have been severely infected by multiple dangerous malware and offer a paid solution to supposedly remove the infections. These fake antimalware programs cost around $70 and collectively generate $13.65 million dollars a month for their creators, according to estimates from PandaLabs.