Taiwan is one of five countries in the Asia-Pacific region that have seen the largest percentage increases in ransomware attacks over the past 18 months, a data analysis report unveiled by Microsoft Corp on Thursday last week showed.
From before the outbreak of COVID-19 to now, the malware encounter rate in the Asia-Pacific region increased 19 percent on average, while the ransomware encounter rate in the region spiked by an average of 240 percent, Microsoft Defender Antivirus’ telemetry data traffic showed.
The malware encounter rate in Taiwan increased 16 percent over the past 18 months, while the ransomware encounter rate jumped 407 percent, the data showed.
The other four countries to record the largest increases in ransomware encounter rates over the past 18 months were New Zealand with 825 percent, Japan with 541 percent, China with 463 percent and Australia with 453 percent.
The study covers 15 Microsoft markets in the Asia-Pacific region, which also includes Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam.
Hackers launch an average of 50 million password attacks every day, or 579 per second.
Microsoft intercepted and thwarted a record-breaking 30 billion e-mail threats last year and estimates that the cost of cybercrime to the global economy would reach US$8 trillion by next year, the report said.
While the Asia-Pacific region encountered ransomware attacks 2.4 times more frequently than before the COVID-19 pandemic began 18 months ago, attacks in Taiwan were nearly two times higher than the regional average rate, indicating that the country needs to further bolster its cybersecurity, Microsoft Taiwan executive Chu Yi-fang (朱以方) said.
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