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Security

Chinese computers vulnerable to viruses

A record number of China's computers have been hit by viruses this year, according to a survey conducted by the Chinese government.

A record number of China's computers have been hit by viruses this year, according to a survey conducted by the Chinese government.

About 85 percent of computers in China were affected by viruses in 2003. This is 1.5 percent more than in 2002 and 25.5 percent more than in 2001, the survey said.

The survey was conducted by the Ministry of Public Security between May and June of this year, according to Xinhua, the Chinese government news agency.


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Some 63 percent of users surveyed said they suffered losses as a result of viruses, a slight drop compared with a year ago.

Infected downloads, booby-trapped Web sites and e-mail attachments were the main avenues of infection for those surveyed.

Ignorance of computer security and lack of defensive tools were responsible for the high infection rate, according to Xinhua.

Earlier this year, the Slammer and Blaster worms hit China hard, thanks to poor awareness of network security in the country. In addition, there have been theories that a large number of viruses around the world come from hacker groups based in China.

CNET Asia staff reported from Singapore.