More than 100,000 computers are infected by the dreaded Conficker virus in the Philippines, a Russia-based security company disclosed Tuesday.
Viatly Kamluk, director of Kaspersky Lab’s Global Research and Analysis Team, said that as of March 2009, the Philippines ranked fourth among South East Asian countries with most Conficker infections with 126,594 computers.
On top of the list of most infected countries in the region was Malaysia with 212,477 computers followed by Thailand (165,080) and Indonesia (164,794).
Globally, Kamluk said the Philippines was ranked 19th.
The Kaspersky official said there are around six million computers currently infected by the Conficker virus, also known as Kido and Downadup, which is perceived as one of the most notorious malicious software programs.
The security company said the huge botnet formed by computers infected by Kido potentially provides cybercriminals with the means to conduct devastating DDoS (distributed denial-of-service) attacks on any Internet resource, steal confidential data from both home users and corporate networks and distribute unsolicited content, including mass spam mailings.
Kamluk said topping the list of the most Kido infected countries around the world is China China with 2,649,674 followed by Brazil with 1,017,825 and Russia 835,970.
Citing figures from research firm Consumer Economics, Kaspersky Lab said the annual global financial damages from malware attacks on businesses exceeded US$ 13 billion in 2007.
The figures were presented by Kamluk and other Kaspersky Lab officials, including Suk Ling Gun, Kaspersky Lab’s managing director for Southeast Asia, in a videoconference in Makati City recently.
The videoconference was participated by six countries across South-East Asia, namely, the Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam.
“There is no definite amount on how much damage the Conficker virus has made on businesses so far because it continues to spread at a phenomenal rate and cybercriminals have become more sophisticated in creating difficult to detect malwares such as Conficker to steal important data from our devices, “ Gun said.
Gun said personal computer owners and IT managers should “treat this issue seriously” to prevent the Conficker virus from spreading further.
“Internet users need to constantly educate themselves and update their security software,” she added.