Over 45,000 New Malware Threats Discovered in 2005 - 01 Mar 2006

According to Panda Software, in 2005 more than 123 new malware threats were discovered every day. The company said that in total more than 45,000 thousand new malware threats were discovered last year. The figures represent a 240 percent increase over 2004, where some 13,000 new threats were recorded by the company. Panda thinks there's a specific reason for the trends.

"2005 stands out for two reasons: The huge increase in the number of malware specimens and the lack of visible epidemics," said Luis Corrons, director of PandaLabs. "The combination of these two factors leads us to think that the cybercrime world intends to use this situation as a smoke screen to keep us busy while they carry out lucrative activities, like \[industrial espionage and creating highly targeted malware\]."

Corrons thinks that rapid release of particular variants, such as the 350 new Sober worm variations that appeared within a matter of hours in November 2005, demonstrate his theory.

Panda also pointed out that over 10,000 of the threats discovered in 2005 were new "bots"--robotic agents that assimilate computers into networks which are then used for criminal purposes, such as fraud and extortion.

This year's trends make this all seem like the good news, comparatively speaking, because so far in 2006 Panda Software is recording more than 300 new threats a day, which means we're on track to see at least 100,000 new forms of malware in 2006 if the trends continue.

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