Which computers are infected with a virus and how to remove it?
The number of computers that have been infected with malware or otherwise infected with viruses in the United States has been growing for years, and now researchers say it’s reached a point where they’re estimating the number of infected computers has reached more than 50 million.
That’s according to the latest report from Trend Micro, which released its annual report Tuesday.
The company analyzed the data collected by Trend Micro’s VirusTotal platform, which aggregates and analyzes data from a variety of sources.
Researchers said in the report that over the past year, they’ve discovered that a “significant number of malicious malware programs have infected over 50 million machines” and are spread through various online channels, including from the Internet, mobile devices, and the Internet of Things.
Researchers believe that more than 70 percent of these infections occur on PCs, and in fact, they estimate that over half of the computers infected are PCs, smartphones, tablets, and other devices that don’t include antivirus software.
While the majority of these malicious programs have not yet been detected, the vast majority are actively infecting computers that aren’t even running any antivirus programs, said Rachael Smedley, chief marketing officer at Trend Micro.
She added that “a small percentage” of malware that are not detected are being distributed via malicious software tools.
The number that researchers are tracking in terms of infected PCs, however, is significantly larger.
“We’re seeing that in addition to PCs that are infected, we’re seeing malicious software on other types of computers, on other devices,” Smed.
“So, for example, we saw a few days ago that the malware was on a lot of different devices,” she said.
“And we’re also seeing malware on smart TVs, and smart home appliances.
So, this malware is spreading to other devices.”
Researchers say the majority (56 percent) of malware infections that they are tracking are on computers, and they have detected that more of these computers are on average infected with malicious software than the number infected with antivirus.
However, that’s not the only malware that is being spread via malicious tools.
For example, researchers have also noticed that a number of malware programs are being deployed via the Windows Store, which is a service that allows users to install programs and games, as well as other software and services.
“They are deploying the same malicious software to all of the Windows PCs that we are seeing on the VirusTotal report,” Smerley said.
This, Smed said, “is indicative of malware being deployed in these malicious applications that we’ve been monitoring.”
Trend Micro researchers also said that they’ve been tracking malware on a number different devices, including phones, tablets and other peripherals.
Smed added that the majority are infected on Android devices.
Researchers are now focusing on detecting whether or not malicious software is being deployed on the infected devices.
“There are a number devices that we have been tracking, and we have noticed that on average, we are finding more than two devices per day,” Sming said.
Researchers also found that malware on Android was spreading via Google Play, where a number people were reporting that they had found malicious apps on their devices.
Smerly added that she believes that malware being distributed through Google Play is a growing threat, because it means that many of these infected devices are likely running Android, but because Google doesn’t have any official measures in place to detect or block such malware, they are being exposed to this kind of malware.
“Google Play is not a good place to have your devices because it is not necessarily malware, it is just content that you’ve downloaded on Google Play,” she explained.
“This is not something that you can detect because there is no malware detection mechanism in place, there’s no way to block malware from accessing Google Play.
So this is a very dangerous place to put your devices, especially for people who have mobile devices.”