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Trend Micro report reveals cyber-attack increase

Thu 2 Aug 2012
FYI, this story is more than a year old

Trend Micro released its round-up for the second quarter, with the cloud security company reporting a rise in attacks on a range of small businesses and large organisations.

The firm says there was an increase in focused attacks, with 142 million threats which were blocked from infecting small businesses increasing by 27% quarter on quarter.

Trend Micro’s outlined an increase in sophisticated attacks against individuals in the form of ATS (automatic transfer system) threats, while cybercriminals stepped up their tactics to gain access to large multinational corporations without notice.

Cybercriminals continues to cast their net widely in large-scale attacks through Police Trojan Attacks and the Black Hole Exploit Kit which continues to target desktop systems.

The cloud security firm added newer platforms such as Android are seeing an unprecedented explosion in malicious apps along with social media as the goal of obtaining personal data and financial information gains further importance.

"The reason why criminals are focusing their attacks on stealing personal data is simple," said Rik Ferguson, director of security research and communication, Trend Micro.

"It’s the sheer volume of people working from multiple devices that leaves them vulnerable to attacks.

"While Trend Micro has been integral in working with authorities to break up a number of cybercriminal rings over the last year, these cybercriminals have acquired new techniques and tools from collaborating with one another to accelerate their ‘industry.’ The fact is: business is booming for cybercrime and everyone needs to take notice.”

Other Trend Micro notable trends:

  • 25,000 Android malware apps were targeted, an increase of 317% over the number of samples found in the first quarter of 2012.
  • Ransomware attacks tracking user's geographic location holds the system captive, scarING the victim into revealing personal information by using the victim’s local police force as a threat.
  • More sophisticated attack tools, like the automatic transfer systems, allow criminals to steal banking information when they are not online.
  • Organisation of tried-and-true attack methods, such as the Blackhole Exploit Kit, offers technical support for criminals looking to collect personal financial information.
  • The IXESHE malware targeted enterprises primarily in East Asia, with the number of C&C servers in Taiwan equaling those located in the U.S.
  • Pinterest has become the social media platform of choice among criminals; the top 5 social engineering lures being used across all social networking sites are: Diablo 3, Instagram Android, Angry Birds Space, London 2012 Olympics and Tibet.

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