Panda Security reports that Thailand, China and Taiwan were the countries with the highest percentage of infected computers in 2010.
The statistics were compiled from data gathered by the antivirus vendor through its ActiveScan online scanner during the course of last year.
All countries listed in the top 20 had over 45% of scanned computers infected. Thailand scored almost 70%, China a bit over 60% and Taiwan slightly under 60%.
The European countries of Ukraine and Latvia came in next, both with rates of over 50%. In fact the first 11 countries in the top had over 50% scores.
The complete list reads: Thailand, China, Taiwan, Ukraine, Latvia, Saudi Arabia, Russia, Israel, Lithuania, Bulgaria, Turkey, Poland, Slovenia, Brazil, Argentina, Spain, Bolivia, Italy, France and Ecuador.
There are some notable changes to the previous top. Taiwan dropped from first spot in 2009 to third in 2010. The infection rate for Poland, Italy, France, Spain and Argentina decreased significantly, while Sweden, Portugal and Colombia, disappeared from the list completely.
As far as malware development goes, 34% of all malicious programs ever created appeared in 2010. In total, there were 20 million new strains of malware discovered last year.
Trojans continued to dominate the threat landscape and accounted for almost 56% of detected samples. This represents a 10% decrease from 2009, when this type of programs represented 66% of the total.
Traditional file infecting viruses have seen a significant rise in number of samples, from 6.6% in 2009 to 22% in 2010, placing them in second place.
Worms have also been on the rise, from 3% to 10% and are now in third place, while adware dropped from 17% to 9.6% and finished fourth in 2010. Spyware has seen a decline from 5.7% to a mere 0.34%.
"It is true that from a global perspective, the situation looks serious. And rightfully so. However, this shouldn’t discourage us from using the Internet, online banking or shopping services, social networking sites…
"That is, it shouldn’t prevent us from enjoying everything good the Internet has to offer
," the Panda Security researchers stress in the report. [pdf