|A mobile security application by BKAV was running on a smartphone. BKAV experts said that this year harmful software would continue to affect a huge number of mobile phones. — Photo bkav.com.vn
HCM CITY (VNS) — Computer viruses caused losses of around US$400 million to Vietnamese users last year, the Bach Khoa Anti-Virus Centre has said following a study.
The losses were calculated based on computer users' incomes and the time they lost due to viruses.
Since Viet Nam has nearly seven million computers, each user lost over $57 on average.
Last year 90 per cent of mobile phone users regularly received spam, 43 per cent of them daily, nearly double the number in 2013.
BKAV also estimated that users lost around VND3.9 billion ($180,000) per day because of harmful software that automatically send messages to certain numbers.
The survey warned that free wifi is not secure in any city and poses a huge threat of information loss even as 24 per cent of users use free wifi to do banking transactions.
Dangerously, 85 per cent of computers in the country were infected by viruses through USBs compared to less than 5 per cent in 2013 after Microsoft pulled the plug on the AutoRun virus check function for USBs on Windows 7 and the latest version of Windows XP.
Dubious applications were the most common source of harmful software since mobile phone uses were "comfortable" about installing any application without worrying about its developer.
One good sign seems to be that more people take internet security seriously, with 40 per cent of users only opening files they get on the internet after confirming with senders or opening them in Safe Mode. Around 73 per cent usually lock their desktop or have a strong password to protect information.
Globally, computer viruses are thought to have caused losses of $445 billion last year.
BKAV experts predicted that this year harmful software would continue to affect a huge number of mobile phones, especially through social media.
By the end of last year it was revealed that around 1,000 internet-connected cameras in Viet Nam and 73,000 world-wide had been taken over by hackers because users did not care about the safety of internet-connected devices (Internet of Things).
Internet of Things is expected to boom this year with the participation of most leading global technology companies. And this will be more grist for the mill for hackers.
In 2014 network protection from distributed denial of service (DDoS) was a headache for administrators. In Viet Nam, many cries for help were addressed to BKAV.
This year the trend will continue, not only in Viet Nam but also around the world, since organisations and companies' activities are more and more dependent on the internet. — VNS