Earlier today, McAfee Labs released its Q3 2013 report, titled “McAfee Labs Threats Report: Third Quarter 2013.” The McAfee Labs team is made of 500 researchers in over 30 countries, who look through real-world examples to build each quarterly report.
The key finding of the Q3 2013 report was that there was a marked increase in malware aimed at getting around digital signature app validations for PCs and Androids, with digitally signed malware increasing by 50% from Q2 2013, with 1.5 million new samples. In particular, McAfee explained that the amount of Android-based malware increased by 30% since Q2 2013, while there was a 125% increase in spam. Also, McAfee Labs noted the rise of a new digital currency, Bitcoin, which was being used in illegal transactions for drugs and weapons.
Bitcoin is basically virtual money laundering, as it is mined via malware that takes over an organization’s payment processing power and produces Bitcoins from every normal transaction. This enables the cybercriminals to offer and purchase illicit materials without drawing the attention of law enforcement.
“The efforts to bypass code validation on mobile devices, and commandeer it altogether on PCs, both represent attempts to circumvent trust mechanisms upon which our digital ecosystems rely,” explained Vincent Weafer, Senior Vice President of McAfee Labs, in a press release today. “The industry must work harder to ensure the integrity of these technologies given they are becoming more pervasive in every aspect of our daily lives.”
To view the full report, please visit the site here.