Study Says Malicious Online Activity Rising In India

Symantec has recently released the India findings of its fifteenth Internet Security Threat Report which highlights key trends in cybercrime from January 1, 2009 to December 31, 2009. The company in its report has observed that malicious activity in India has been on the rise with the country moving up from 11th in 2008 to 5th in 2009, in terms of malicious activity on the Internet.

The company attributes this increase to the fact that Internet activity in the country has increased and people are spending more time online. Additionally, Indians are increasingly accessing and editing sensitive information from their workstations/PCs, from home and in transit through their laptops, net books or smart phones. The report also indicates that countries with emerging broadband infrastructure may continue to account for larger percentages within specific categories.

The report estimates that India saw an average of 788 bots per day during 2009. There were 62,623 distinct bot-infected computers observed in the country during the period. Amongst the cities in India with the highest number of bot-infected computers, the report slots Mumbai at the top with 50 per cent followed by Delhi at 13 per cent and Hyderabad at 7 per cent. Cities like Bangalore (6 per cent), Cochin (5 per cent), Chennai (4 per cent), Ahmadabad (2 per cent) and Pune (3 per cent) too had a sizeable share of bot-infected computers.

The report also observes that the threat landscape in the country is being heavily infested with worms and viruses. The percentage of worms in India at 51 per cent is higher than the APJ regional average of 40 per cent. Findings indicate that 26 per cent of the malicious codes in India were viruses versus the APJ average of 16 per cent. Trojans (19 per cent) and Backdoors (3 per cent) were the other prominent malicious codes in the country.

The report also ranks India as the third highest spam originating country in the world, contributing four per cent to the worldwide spam volumes. In the APJ region however, India is ranked first and is estimated to contribute 21 per cent to the regional total. It also observes that six per cent of the world spam zombies and 28 per cent of the APJ regional spam zombies resided in India. One per cent of the world phishing hosts and 7 per cent of the regional phishing were in India.

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