The term malware stands for malicious software and means “malicious computer programs”.
How malware works?
The malicious functions of malware are usually hidden and run in the background. Depending on the target of the malicious code, malware can delete or manipulate files unnoticed or pass the user’s behavior on to third parties without being asked. Usually, malware cannot be removed by simply uninstalling a program, as it is often unclear which installed program contains malware. Moreover, even after the standard uninstallation, software fragments may remain in the system that continue to perform unwanted functions.
Classification of malware
Malware is the umbrella term for malicious software. This term covers different types of software with different goals. These can be used individually or in combination with one another.
Spread of malware
As an IT security company, ProSec GmbH has set up an environment that functions as a honeypot system. This honeypot is used to “attract” malware. This gives us the opportunity to identify and analyze new threats.
The evaluations show a steady increase. The number of new types of malware in 2008 was around 25,000 malware programs per day, 10 years later a number of around 500,000 new malware threats were found per day. Most of the new malware types fall into the Trojan horse category with 81.9%, followed by adware with 14.7%; the other places are occupied by worms, backdoors, and ransomware.
Windows PCs are more susceptible to malware attacks than macOS operating systems. This is because Windows operating systems are more widespread than macOS. Therefore, malware is primarily written for these systems, as attacks on them have a higher probability of success.
Malware - How to Protect Yourself
The most important protective shield is security software, including virus scanners and firewalls. As an end-user, you can choose between free and paid anti-malware programs. However, it should be noted that only 41% of malware is now detected by security programs. Accordingly, the remaining 59% can only be covered individually, E.g. through Penetration Testing or Vulnerability analysis.
Since the types and types of malware are constantly evolving, it is necessary to install available security updates for all your programs, virus scanners, and operating systems.
In addition, it is essential to raise awareness of IT security in the daily use of PC systems, for example through IT security training. Last but not least, the human factor plays a decisive role in the security of your IT system.