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McAfee – Estimated 75 Million unique malware samples in 2011

McAfee shares an informative research report documenting the highly customized and polymorphic nature of malware currently circulating in the wild

McAfee Q4 Threats Report Shows Malware Surpassed 75 Million Samples in 2011
http://blogs.mcafee.com/mcafee-labs/mcafee-q4-threats-report-shows-malware-surpassed-75-million-samples-in-2011

QUOTE: The overall growth of PC-based malware actually declined throughout Q4 2011, and is significantly lower than Q4 2010. The cumulative number of unique malware samples in the collection still exceeds the 75 million mark. In total, both 2011 and the fourth quarter were by far the busiest periods for mobile malware that McAfee has seen yet, with Android firmly fixed as the largest target for writers of mobile malware.

Contributing to the rise in malware were rootkits, or stealth malware. Though rootkits are some of the most sophisticated classifications of malware, designed to evade detection and “live” on a system for a prolonged period, they showed a slight decline in Q4. Fake AV dropped considerably from Q3, while AutoRun and password-stealing Trojan malware show modest declines. In a sharp contrast to Q2 2011, Mac OS malware has remained at very low levels the last two quarters.

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