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Vietnam’s leading internet security firm, Bach Khoa Internetwork Security Centre (BKAV), announced that Vietnamese users lost some VND12.3 trillion (US$540 million) in 2017 due to viruses.
The figure released by BKAV on its website on Wednesday showed that this year’s figure was much higher than last year’s VND10.4 trillion.
“It is expected that Vietnam would continue to face malware attacks, such as ransomware and malware containing crypto-mining tools,” BKAV said.
The results were calculated from BKAV’s network security assessment in December.
It said that losses from viruses in Vietnam reached record levels in recent years. In big economies such as the United States, China, Japan and Germany, it caused damages of $200 billion a year.
The network security in Vietnam in 2017 saw issues of increasing attacks on Internet of Things (IoT) devices, a boom of fake news and malware containing crypto-mining tools.
Specifically, this year saw a surge in cryptocurrencies worldwide. This has promoted hackers to strengthen their network attacks on computers to turn them into crypto-mining tools. There are two popular attacks, including taking advantage of website flaws and of social networks to spread viruses.
Hacker often choose websites with a high number of users to install malware containing crypto-mining tools. When people access the websites, the malware is activated. As more than 40 per cent of websites in Vietnam have flaws, they would be the targets of hackers in spreading malware containing crypto-mining tools.
Hackers also spread the virus through social networks. On December 19, malware broke out on Facebook in Vietnam.
BKAV’s statistics showed that over 23,000 computers in Vietnam were affected with malware. It also showed that the virus would be strengthened through Facebook, email, an operating system’s flaws or a USB in the time to come.
Ransomware was also another threat for network security in 2017. The WannaCry malware spread viruses to computers in more than 90 countries within a few hours. In Vietnam, over 1,900 computers contain WannaCry and some 52 per cent of the total have flaws, which could be attacked by the virus.
Passwords have been a widely used certification solution. However, Vietnamese users have not realised their importance.
In recent years, some cases of losing money in bank accounts in Vietnam were due to users not being cautious while entering their password on websites, clicking on strange links or using only one password for different accounts.
These habits should be changed to ensure safety of users, BKAV added.
Its statistics revealed that up to 55 per cent of users use only one password for different accounts at many online services.
In addition, IoT connecting devices such as Router Wifi and Camera IP could be the targets of hackers.
BKAV’s experts forecast that in addition to the spread of malware to create botnet for cryptocurrency mining, hackers would attack cryptocurrency transaction floors in 2018. Currently, most of the transaction floors have not been guaranteed by government. People joining in such floors are at the risk of losing money in case of attacks.