Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Brazil is number one

Number one in online banking trojans.

Here’s why: Back in the 1970s and 1980s, hyperinflation and economic chaos led Brazil to streamline its basic system for completing financial transactions. The new system, called Sistema de Pagamentos Brasileiro, or SPB, helped the South American nation restore its transactions infrastructure. But it also accelerated its citizenry’s dependence on online banking. Today 60% of Internet users in Brazil are online banking patrons, versus 23% in the United States, according to Colin Groudin, CEO of Grail Research. What’s more, Brazilians use their debit cards and file electronic tax returns much more than we do, Groudin says.

Quite naturally, the best-and-brightest malicious software coders and thieving cyber gangs swarmed Brazil like flies to honey. Brazil has emerged as one of the most hostile online environment in the world; in particular, it has become a hotbed for innovation in banking trojans, says Gunter Ollmann, of IBM Internet Security Systems.

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