Guest Post: Cryptominers Were The Most Common Malware Family In 2021 Says Atlas VPN

Malware comes in many different types, and each works in a unique way to achieve its objective.

According to the data presented by the Atlas VPN team, cryptominers top malware family list in 2021 with over 150K detections. Furthermore, cybercriminals targeted information and communication businesses the most with malware attacks.

In total, 150,909 detections of cryptocurrency miners were seen in 2021. By using CPU and GPU resources of victims’ devices, threat actors mine various crypto for profit.

Web shell scripts accumulated 149,290 detections. A successful web shell attack allows attackers to access sensitive resources or make way for malware or ransomware injections.

The Ulise malware accounted for 145,321 detections in 2021. Such a type of Trojan enters a system as a file dropped by other malware or as a file accidentally downloaded by users when browsing malicious websites.

WannaCry ransomware cryptoworm threats resulted in 97,585 detections. WannaCry spreads across networks infecting Windows computers.

Cybersecurity writer at Atlas VPN Vilius Kardelis shares his thoughts on malware attacks against companies:

“Malware attacks enable attackers to profit off businesses simply and efficiently. Companies that become victims of cyberattacks often become vulnerable to data theft, hijacking, and other similar cyberattacks in the future. By employing good cybersecurity practices and applications, businesses can mitigate malware attack risks.”

Industries targeted by malware

Usually, cybercriminals choose to attack industries, which can potentially bring the most rewards.

The information and communication industry was targeted the most in 2021, with 561,753 malware files in emails. Businesses in this industry were appealing targets due to employees often using computers as their primary work tool.

Cybercriminals sent out 397,072 malware files in emails to the retail industry. Retail companies possess large amounts of customer data, which draws the attention of more cybercriminals.

The construction industry received emails with 356,952 malware files in 2021. The finance industry was on the receiving end of 198,408 malware files in emails. At the same time, the manufacturing industry was the target of 188,373 malware files in emails.

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