Strategy, Threat intelligence, Threats, Malware

Malware threats reach record highs

June 25, 2021
TechRadar reports that a McAfee study showed that new malware threat volumes averaged 688 threats per minute in the first quarter of 2021, which is 40 threats per minute higher than the previous quarter and is the highest on record.

Threat actors have also been moving to customized ransomware-as-a-service campaigns from mass-spread campaigns, as they seek larger targets, according to McAfee.

"We first saw them [cybercriminals] use ransomware to extract small payments from millions of individual victims. Today, we see Ransomware as a Service supporting many players in these illicit schemes holding organizations hostage and extorting massive sums for the criminals," said Raj Samani, fellow and chief scientist at McAfee.

Despite increased threat volumes, McAfee found that ransomware attacks dropped by 50% in the first quarter, with REvil, RansomeXX and Ryuk being the most commonly detected ransomware strains. Meanwhile, cryptomining malware increased by 117%, which McAfee links to 64-bit mining app availability.
Jill Aitoro

SC Media Editor in Chief Jill Aitoro has 20 years of experience editing and reporting on technology, business and policy. She also serves as editorial director at SC Media’s parent company, CyberRisk Alliance. Prior to joining CRA, she worked at Sightline Media as editor of Defense News and executive editor of the Business-to-Government Group. She previously worked at Washington Business Journal and Nextgov, covering federal technology, contracting and policy, as well as CMP Media’s VARBusiness and CRN and Penton Media’s iSeries News.

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