'Filipinos get a beating from cyber-criminals'

By Roderick L. Abad, BusinessMirror

Posted at Oct 23 2013 08:53 AM | Updated as of Oct 23 2013 04:59 PM

MANILA -- The Philippines is now considered in the “high-risk level” of cyber attack, be it in the form of a Web or a local threat, an antivirus vendor said on Tuesday.

Citing the global Kaspersky Security Bulletin for the month of September, Bryan Sat, Kaspersky Lab business development manager for the Philippines, told reporters that 14 percent of Filipino Internet users today have been affected by viruses or the so-called malware.

He added that 20 percent of Internet users have been attacked by local threats coming from a USB stick, CDs and DVDs, and other through “offline” methods.

“The Philippines is on the dangerous level now, [wherein] Internet users are more at risk compared to last time,” he said.

Seeing the country’s risk level growing, Sat warned that threats are becoming more targeted unlike the viruses in the past that were created just for spying.

“They are really killing the computers at present. They are really stealing the confidential information, and even hacking personal accounts and those of the companies for documents,” he said.

Based on data gathered and processed using the Kaspersky Security Network (KSN) that integrates cloud-based technologies into personal and corporate products, the report shows that web browsers are the main channels of cybercriminals in spreading malicious programs.

The leading method used by attackers is through exploiting vulnerabilities in browsers and their plug-ins (drive-by download). Infection here happens when visiting an infected web site sans any intervention from the users and without their knowledge.

Based on the report, there are about 20 most active malicious programs involved in attacks targeting the users’ computers—mostly Trojans.

A total of 630 unique verdicts and 10,212 notifications has been detected and recorded by the web antivirus while on computers of those Kaspersky users who have given their consent to have statistics collected on their computers and sent to Kaspersky Lab.

On the other hand, there are 5,225 detection verdicts registered by the on-access antivirus module from 24,219 users.

Meanwhile, 3,203 users have detected network attacks blocked by a firewall that includes the incoming packet analysis features through the Intrusion Detection Systems.

The use of local infection is also high in the Philippines, as per the report, in which Kaspersky Lab products detected 27,172 local malware incidents on the computers of the KSN participants in the country last month.

Overall, 20.39 percent or one-fifth of domestic users were attacked by local threats during the period, which catapults the Philippines to the 23rd rank worldwide.

“So the wise tip that I can give is to be more conscious when surfing on the Internet. Whenever you are prompted to key in your password, just be more careful. Of course, it will be good that you can have the Internet protection that will be able to advice you that the web site that you’re going to is illegitimate. Lastly, try not to share any information that you don’t want to be public in the future. Just keep it to yourself,” Sat advised.