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Businesses assaulted by hundreds of new malware strains

(Image credit: Image Credit: JMiks / Shutterstock)

Businesses are bombarded with new malware strains every day, but they’ve still managed to reduce the amount of time hackers spend inside a breached network.

This is according to a new report by cybersecurity firm FireEye, based on the data extracted from its FireEye Mandiant investigations.

The report states that of all the malware families observed in 2019, almost half (41 percent) were completely new. Of the recognised strains, 70 percent belonged to one of the five most popular malware families.

According to FireEye, this indicates cybercriminals are innovating at pace, and are also outsourcing tasks to monetise their operations faster.

The report also said the majority of new malware families targeted either Windows, or multiple platforms. However, it’s rare for malware to target just Linux or Mac.

Despite the volume of new malware strains, businesses have managed to reduce the amount of time hackers spend inside a network before detection.

The median dwell time in EMEA has fallen from 177 days last year to 54 days this year, representing a 70 percent decrease. Global median dwell time also fell by 28 percent, from 78 days to 56 days.

“FireEye Mandiant has seen organisations largely improving their level of cybersecurity sophistication, but combating the latest threats is still a huge challenge,” said Jurgen Kutscher, Executive Vice President of Service Delivery at FireEye.

“There are more active groups now than ever before and we’ve seen an aggressive expansion of their goals. Consequently, it’s crucial for organisations to continue building and testing their defences.”