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More than 80% of Latin American users were infected with a malware during 2010, and four out of 10 had their computers reformatted because of an infection, according to a report by Slovakian antivirus and security software developer Eset.
The study also reported that 64.8% of infections were through the internet, where the main source of malware was through websites (26.4%), followed by emails (19.3%), instant messages (10.6%) and social networks (5.1%).
Furthermore, worms accounted for 48% of infections, while Trojans represented 33%.
"To ensure safe navigation, we recommended avoiding opening suspicious links and websites, upgrading the operating systems and applications and implementing strong passwords, plus antivirus, anti-spam and firewalls," said Eset Latin America's head of education and research, Federico Pacheco.
Internet users grew 47.3% during the last three years in Latin America, reaching more than 200mn users, Eset said, citing consultancy Tendencias Digitales.