Cybercrime cases have risen over the next few weeks to the end of 2020, with Nigeria, South Africa, and Kenya reporting 28 million malware attacks in the first eight months of the year. During the time span, one hundred and two million potentially unwanted applications (PUAs) were found.
The spike “shows that it is not just the malware that targets users, but also the ‘grey zone’ programs that rise in popularity and interrupt their experiences, although users may not even know it is there,” a global cybersecurity and anti-virus provider said.
In Nigeria, it detected 3.8 million malware attacks and 16.8 million PUA detections, while nearly 10 million malware attacks and a whopping 43 million PUA infractions were reported in South Africa. With around 14 million counts and 41 million PUA appearances, Kenyan users experienced even more malware attacks.
PUAs refer to applications that are typically not considered malicious on the surface but have a detrimental effect on user experience, according to the organization.
For example, the anti-virus provider noted that adware fills user devices with advertisements prop up aggressive monetizing software displaying unnecessarily paid deals and attracting unwitting online users, even malicious ones, to download superfluous apps on the computer.
The researchers found that PUAs target users almost four times more than conventional malware, estimating the short-term adverse effects of landscape operation in African countries. They fly wider, too.
“The explanation for the increasing popularity of ‘grey zone’ software is that it is harder to notice at first, and if the program is found, its developers will not be considered cybercriminals.”
The problem with them is that consumers are not always aware that they have consented to certain programs being installed on their computers.