Malware: How the Industry Fights It

While malicious software is becoming increasingly destructive, people around the world are taking action and looking for solutions that protect both customers and users.

Throughout the history of the Internet, there have been several malware milestones that have put the industry on edge and that have been essentially responsible for creating new protocols and security developments. In this sense, it was in 2016, with “Mirai”, when a new attack was launched that was characterized by a destructive capacity never seen before. Built with millions of vulnerable LoT devices, it launched what is now known as ransomware and brought down a large portion of the web. It was followed by “Hajime” (which included a sophisticated set of cybertools), “Brickerbot” (which failed to simultaneously shutdown millions of devices), and “Hide ‘N Seek” (creating a decentralized IoT botnet which sought to implement malicious routines).

Constantly evolving in their complexity, destructiveness and unpredictability, the industry in turn also continues to develop greater protection measures in order to eradicate this type of digital attack. But what are these defenses based on?

“The problems surrounding malware are really very complex and involve a large number of factors. That is why I believe that the main strategy to combat it is to always be updated and know what new strategies appear in different parts of the world ”- Sebastián Pérez, CTO of E-PLANNING

The Trustworthy Accountability Group initiative

A swarm of compromised loT devices quickly becomes a dangerous threat. Even more so if we consider that they can learn and adapt, and are programmed to ultimately destroy the devices they infect. In this context, initiatives such as the “TAG Certified Against Malware Program” represent a step forward in the fight against malware.

“E-PLANNING provides an automatic ad blocking system. In other words, when we detect that there may be a piece that may be malware, we have the ability to quickly block it throughout the network and thus prevent its circulation ”- Sebastián Pérez, CTO of E-PLANNING

  • What is it about? Launched in 2016 by The Trustworthy Accountability Group, it is a program in which companies that comply with anti-fraud certification guidelines receive a seal of certification. This provides security to customers and users, as well as creating a chain of trust between companies.
  • What is the goal of the program? Malicious software degrades confidence in the system as it generates a bad experience for the consumer. The objective behind this program is clear: to eliminate the distribution of malicious software throughout the digital advertising supply chain.

A study by The 614 Group revealed that the use of TAG-certified distribution channels for digital advertising reduced the IVT rate to 1.48 percent on more than 6.5 billion screen and video impressions, reducing the level of fraud by more than 83% compared to the overall industry average.

  • How does it work? In addition to the certificate seal and specific guidelines to fight malware, the program offers useful tools for the advertising industry: A Payment identification system (which creates a chain of custody for transactions), an IP Directory (a common list of IP addresses with invalid traffic), a Publisher Sourcing Disclosure Requirements -PSDR- (which aims to build market confidence by revealing the amount of source traffic for a given publisher), and The Ads.txt Specification (which provides greater transparency in the inventory supply chain by creating a public registry of authorized digital sellers).

“For us, taking care of our clients is always top priority. That is why, for some time, we have integrated the AdLightning tool into our architecture, a company that is 100% dedicated to fighting malware. In this way, integrated with our own technology, we have the ability to detect malicious ads and, automatically, block them on the page. ”.- Sebastián Pérez, CTO of E-PLANNING