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China's computers still prone to virus infections
by Konstantin Kornakov | Aug 15 2006 13:30 GMT

A survey by the Chinese Ministry of Public Security has revealed that as many as three quarters of computers in China were subject to virus attacks in the year from May 2005 to May 2006. This represents a huge percentage of the estimated 120 million Chinese Internet users, but the good news is that the figure is 6% lower that last year. Three years ago the number of virus infections was even higher, standing at 85% of computers in the Asian country.

The survey of Chinese computer users is carried out on a yearly basis and asks the views of 13,824 respondents. This year results show that most of the problems with computers occur due to poorly updated software, which is highly vulnerable in today's world. Internet and portable disk media were two major sources of virus infection, the survey reports. Viruses in China are being seen more and more as a potential source of income for malicious users looking to use the Internet with criminal purposes. Many outbreaks, the survey reveals, are due to home-written malware.

The figure of 75% is quite high in comparison to statistics from the West. A 2005 report by the National Cyber Security Alliance in the US, for instance, shows that some 55% of users reported ever having a virus on their computer. The Chinese survey also mentions that 54% of companies questioned had reported Internet-related problems, and 84% of these problems were to do with viruses. This is also higher than the level of virus infections in businesses in the West. A British survey out in 2006 claims that 35% of UK businesses have suffered infection by viruses and other malware in 2005.


National Cyber Security Online