Targeted attacks around the globe will escalate

Experts from Trend Micro believe that targeted attacks campaigns will continue to multiply in 2015, after cybercriminals had noteworthy breaches via targeted attacks in the U.S.

Defense experts predict hackers within countries such as Vietnam, UK, and India, will pursue the use of targeted attacks and we will see attacks against non-traditional countries like we’ve seen recently against Malaysia and Indonesia based organizations.

“What we are seeing today is not a huge surprise but rather the velocity and brutal measures cybercriminals are using to steal information,” said Raimund Genes, CTO, Trend Micro. “Following the success of targeted attacks from Chinese and Russian cybercriminals, many hackers from other countries will regard cyber-attacks as a more practical method to grab a foothold in an organization. Additionally, with the incessant barrage of data breaches emerging almost daily, it’s reasonable to presume that data breaches will be essentially regarded as a common offshoot of the present threat landscape.”

Threats around banking will continue to become more severe as more unique cybercrime attacks against financial institutions also emerge and financial and banking intuitions must implement two-factor authentication for online services.

“The payment ecosystem will continue to evolve,” said JD Sherry, vice president of technology and solutions, Trend Micro. “Massive transformation is upon us and we will continue to see threat actors trying to manipulate Near Field Communications (NFC) as certain platforms gain momentum due to their significant following and user’s penchant for adopting the latest and greatest technology.”

Predictions for 2015 include:

  • More cybercriminals will turn to darknets and exclusive-access forums to share and sell crimeware.
  • Increased cyber activity will translate to better, bigger, and more successful hacking tools and attempts.
  • Exploits kits will target Android, as mobile vulnerabilities play a bigger role in device infection.
  • Targeted attacks will become as prevalent as cybercrime.
  • New mobile payment methods will introduce new threats.
  • We will see more attempts to exploit vulnerabilities in open source apps.
  • Technological diversity will save Internet of Everything devices from mass attacks but the same won’t be true for the data they process.
  • More severe online banking and other financially motivated threats will surface.

As factors like market pressure push device manufacturers to launch more and more smart devices sans security in mind to meet the rising demand, so will attackers increasingly find vulnerabilities to exploit for their own gain.

“Smart homes and home automation will continue to proliferate across the globe, further increasing all of our attack surfaces,” said Sherry. “As such, smart device manufactures must consider how to secure the data that resides in these devices not just the devices themselves.”