Dell Inc. has released its Dell Security Annual Threat Report to reveal that the organization has identified four aggressively emerging cyber threats that dominated the cybercrimes in 2015 and which largely constitute security risks for 2016.
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The report was based on security data collected throughout last year by Dell SonicWALL Global Response Intelligence Defense (GRID) network with daily feeds from over one million firewalls and tens of millions of connected endpoints. The objective of the report is to sensitive individuals and organizations to effectively identify, prepare for, and prevent malicious internet attacks.
The four top emerging cyber threats identified by the report include –
• Evolution of exploit kits to keep cyber-criminals ahead of security systems
• Rising surge in SSL/TLS encryption with which attackers conceal malware from firewalls
• Continued rise of Android malware
• Steady increase in the number of malware attacks
“Many of the breaches in 2015 were successful because cybercriminals found and exploited a weak link in victims’ security programs due to disconnected or outdated point solutions that could not catch these anomalies in their ecosystem,” said Curtis Hutcheson, general manager, Dell Security.
“Each successful attack provides an opportunity for security professionals to learn from others’ oversights, examine their own strategies and shore up the holes in their defense systems. At Dell Security, we believe the best way for customers to protect themselves is to inspect every packet on their network and validate every entitlement for access,” Hutcheson said.
With the rising exploit kits, Dell SonicWALL observed that Angler, Nuclear, Magnitde and Rig were mostly deployed in 2015, giving the attackers the ease of access to attack computer networks and other programs such as Adobe Flash, Adobe Reader, and Microsoft Silverlight.
They were much able to conceal their activities using the exploit kits to infiltrate security systems which included URL pattern changes; steganography which is concealing the file, message, image, or video within another file, message, image, or video; and modifications in landing page entrapment techniques.
The cyber criminals also increased the use of SSL/TLS encryption to hit at over 900 million users in 2015 by operating under the radar to carry out massive hacking activities.
“The good news is that there are ways to enjoy the security benefits of SSL/TLS encryption without providing a tunnel for attackers,” said Patrick Sweeney, vice president of Product Management and Marketing, Dell Security. “In addition to general security best practices like updating your software, you can upgrade to a capable, extensible next-generation firewall with integrated SSL-DPI inspection.”
Android malware was also massively used by internet attackers last year and this targeted most smartphones on the market. Dell SonicWALL noted that Android-specific ransomware popularity accelerated throughout the year, and the financial sector continued to be a prime target for this malware with several malicious threats targeted at banking apps where the smartphone device was already infected.
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And then, malware attacks sort of doubled to reach up to 8.19 billion cases with government agencies, business organizations, and private individuals the target of these malware attacks.