Security is an ongoing threat and we are constantly under attack.
This statement can be safely deduced from security software company Trend Micro’s research findings, which revealed that 3.5 new threats occur every second, with money acting as the main motive for cybercriminals. This statistic highlights our increasing need to be more vigilant towards security attacks.
In its Q1 2014 threat roundup report, it is found that the key security threats in the Asia Pacific (APAC) region include threat landscape, targeted attacks, malware, mobile, and online banking.
Seeing how we are shifting from a PC era to a mobile era, it comes as no surprise that mobile threats emerge as the more prevalent threat. In fact, its report states that the number of high-risk apps has reached more than 2 million globally, with almost 600,000 new threats for Q1 2014 alone. Additional finding also states that 10 out of 1000 mobile apps are found to be malicious.
Comparing the regional threat landscape and Singapore’s, Trend Micro finds that in ASEAN countries, there is a mix of traditional and new threats; and since the rate of infrastructure is slower in developing countries, it results in older forms of malware. Conversely, Singapore is attacked with “newer, more modern” threats; and the modern high-speed infrastructure increases consumption and risk. Furthermore, adware and serial key generators are noted to be the most prevailing form of security threat in Singapore.
Then, now, and in the future
One interesting finding Trend Micro has come across is that a computing category which did not exist six years ago has easily overtaken one that has been around for 38 years.
This new computing category refers to the iOS and Android mobile platform. In comparison to the long-standing PC platform, mobile sales have been steadily increasing since 2008 – a stark contrast to the PC’s declining sales.
This increasing mobile penetration leads to massive data creation – a whopping 1.8 petabytes of data per minute, according to the report. To put things in perspective, this equates to 204 million emails, 700,000 files and 278,000 tweets.
Trend Micro also predicts that at least one major data breach will occur every month in 2014, and that the number for mobile malware (currently 2 million) will jump to 3 million by the end of this year.
What do these attacks mean for organisations?
Trend Micro concludes that the top three global IT challenges within organisations are consumerisation, cyber threats, as well as cloud and virtualisation.
The first challenge refers to consumerisation among employees, which includes device hopping, cloud sync and sharing, collaboration, as well as social networking. In terms of targeted attacks, statistics have shown that 91 per cent of them begin with spear-phishing – an email spoofing fraud targeted at a specific organisation, which seeks unauthorised access to confidential data.
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