As more products connect to the internet and more people connect themselves online, the risk of being infected by malware has also increased. But by how much? According to estimate from online security firm Kaspersky Lab, there has been one billion more cyber-attacks on machines they protect in 2014 when compared to last year – a huge increase on the frequency of attacks.

But for an even scarier number, there has been 6.2 billion malicious attacks on user computers and mobile devices, which were blocked by only Kaspersky Lab antivirus products in 2014.

“38% of user computers were subjected to at least one web attack over the year. 44% of web attacks neutralised by Kaspersky Lab products were carried out using malicious web resources located in the US,” Kaspersky Lab said in a statement.

It seems as though 2014 was indeed the year to try and steal as much financial information as possible, as worldwide over two million personal computers were targeted to steal money through online access to bank accounts.

“One of the most effective ways to deliver malware to user computers is to exploit vulnerabilities in Oracle Java and in browsers such as Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, etc. In addition, cybercriminals continue to use exploits for Adobe Reader vulnerabilities. Each year we see how cyber-criminals are creating more inventive ways of luring in their victims,” explained Maria Garnaeva, security expert at Kaspersky Lab’s Global Research and Analysis Team.

Mobile phones hasn’t been immune to cyber-attacks either. On the contrary, the number of attacks has actually increased.

According to the Russian-based company 295 500 new mobile malicious programmes were detected this year, 12 100 mobile banking Trojans analysed (9 times as many as last year), and one in five Android users encountered a mobile threat at least once over the year.

“2011 was the year of mobile malware formation, especially on Android-based devices; 2012 was when they developed and 2013 was when they reached maturity. In 2014 mobile malware focused on financial issues: the number of mobile banking Trojans was nine times greater than in the previous year and development  in this area is continuing at an alarming rate,” concluded Roman Unuchek, Senior Mobile Malware Analyst at Kaspersky Lab.

[Source – Kaspersky Lab]
Charlie started his professional life as a motoring journalist for a community newspaper in Mpumalanga, Charlie explored different journalistic angles since his entry into the fast-paced world of publishing in 2006. While fostering a passion for the arts, Charlie developed a love for technology – both which allowed him to serve as Entertainment and Technology Editor for an online publication. Charlie has since been heavily involved in consumer technology for various websites and publications. He thoroughly enjoys World War II films and cerebral documentaries; aviation; photography and indie music. Oh yes, and he also has a rather strange obsession with collecting coffee mugs from his travels.