Kaspersky Lab has detected a total of 91,664,758 local threat infections in Thailand last year, according to its recent Kaspersky Security Bulletin for 2018. The report, based on Kaspersky Security Network, further unmasked the dangers of removable devices in the country.
Local threat is a type of online infection which happens when users are attacked by malware spread via removable USB drives, CDs and DVDs, and through other “offline” methods. Worms and file viruses account for the majority of such incidents.
In the period of January – December 2018, 57.3% or nearly 6-in-10 users in Thailand were attacked by local threats, which made the country the 81st nation with most numbers of this type of infection last year.
“The number of local threats detected by Kaspersky Lab solutions in Southeast Asia went up 3.8% in 2018 compared with the statistics last 2017. Although Thailand is significantly safer than most of the countries in the region, it is still important to mitigate these simple but dangerous risks,” says Yeo Siang Tiong, General Manager for Southeast Asia at Kaspersky Lab.
“In our latest ICS Threat report, we mentioned that human-error like using infected removable drives, are among the loopholes cybercriminals are exploiting to wage both the most basic and the most sophisticated attacks. It is crucial for organizations to put the spotlight on their employees’ habits and awareness. One simple mistake can put an entire manufacturing plant under jeopardy, like perhaps using an infected USB,” adds Yeo.
Suguru Ishimaru, Security Researcher at Kaspersky Lab Japan, also mentioned that the main factor behind Thailand’s relatively high number of local threats last year is the increase of detections for Risktool, NetTool and Adware, which made the top 5 verdicts in the country in 2018.
Protection against local attacks not only requires an antivirus solution capable of treating infected objects, but also a firewall, anti-rootkit functionality and control over removable devices.
Kaspersky Lab’s team of security experts also shared some useful tips on minimising the risk or local threats:
– Don’t use unknown flash drives. Backing-up your files and your system is important, but always be careful when inserting someone else’s flash or USB drive into your computer. External drives can be filled with malware, and all it takes is for one well-placed “left behind” drive to infect an entire network. The bottom line: If it’s not your device, don’t use it. Scan your device regularly for viruses and other malicious programs to make sure that you don’t infect any other machines.
– Don’t procrastinate on software updates. Dragging your feet on installing necessary updates (for programs like Windows, Java, Flash and Office) is a misstep that can help criminals gain access. Even with solid antivirus programs in place, big security holes in popular programs can leave you vulnerable to attack. By not downloading the update, you are missing out on the patch, and leaving your system open to an attack and potential data breach.
– Keep your antivirus software up to date. Security software cannot protect against every threat, but it will detect and remove most malware—though you should make sure it’s up to date.