Saturday, 9 May 2020

Most Dangerous Virus & Malware Threats to be Aware of in 2020

Virus attack on computer is nothing new and although antivirus programs have been evolving to higher levels of sophistication, detecting and removing malicious threats from computer systems is still a major concern for many systems and users.

Malware attacks are on the rise, targeting Windows and Apple Mac with infections at an  ever increasing rate. So how do we eradicate malicious and virus attack problems caused by these threats?

It is very tempting to make predictions about the future of security industry based on current threats and trends within the security industry.

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To get a better ideas of what the state of affairs for virus and malware attacks looks like  let’s do a deeper analysis of the latest malware trends, major statistics and effects these infections have on computers running Windows, Android and Mac operating systems.

Statistics shows that security attacks counts for 623 million records breaches in 2020, with February showing the highest level on record.

This trend is spread across business and residential domains in the form of cyber attacks, Ransomware, data breaches, malicious incidents and financial information loss.

Be Careful With Your Productivity Tools

Microsoft Office is a primary attack point for security compromise. As one of the leading productivity tool used by residential and business users, there is also a greater level of threats for compromise to occur on a larger scale with successful outcome.

So, the main suggestion here is to beware of your own productivity tools. Executable files were once the core source for attacking target systems and inflicting malicious intent.

Now attackers are exploring other options that can be weaponized for more sophisticated yet subtle attacks on Windows, Apple Mac and network systems.

Although users have caught onto the fact that links and executable are likely to be malicious, email services are still prone to open .doc files which hackers have been using as exploits to their advantage. As much as 38% of malware is now being disguised as a Word document.

Ransomware is Shill a Massive Problem

The average cost of security breaches has increased by 6.8%. and in 2019, the average cost of data breach has increased by 6.4% to £3.8 million.

Reports that the impact of ransomware is becoming  less common are not true as organisations and individuals are still being targeted by mutated versions of this security strain with a whopping payout cost of £9.26 billion for remediating ransomware damages or honouring the ransom amounts.

Cryptojacking is on the rise

Cryptocurrency mining requires huge amount of processor CPU power for successful conversion.

The presents of such power CPU power presents a lucrative option hackers who aim to hijack a crypto miner CPU cycle and use it to their benefit for free.

There is a massive rise in Cryptojacking malware which steals the CPU cycles used to mine cryptocurrency. As of December 2019, this is now one of the fastest-growing malware attacks in cyber space, with up to 10 million malicious attacks per month.

Hackers are coming for your phone.

Smart phones are now a major target for malicious attacks by malware, Trojans and viruses.
By mobile phones being always online and having processing power that is sometimes equivalent to most modern computers. mobile malware are targeting both new and older versions of Android apps with many now using emails, text, apps and wireless hijacking as feasible route of exploitation.

What About phishing attacks?

9 out of 10 cyber attacks start with a simple phishing email, where hackers attempt to trick users into handing over important personal or business information.

Even with the introduction of security awareness training, statistical evidence shows that a vast proportion of system compromise are the result of  phishing attacks.

Most cyber criminals need your funds

cyber security - hackers need your money

Paying out for cyber blackmail of at the forefront of most malicious attacks.

Hackers are no longer interested in compromising systems for the sake of petty revenge, nation-state espionage, industrial espionage, or simple activism/vandalism – the truth is, they want your money.

Financial gains account for 76% of attacks by cyber criminals who are motivated to see this as the fundamental way for them to make a living.

Small businesses are the most susceptible to virus and malware attacks.

Companies with less than 1,000 employees are classified as small business and believe it or not these are the prime target for cyber attacks in their various forms.

Over 60% of all cyber attacks are directed at small businesses who, either lacks the budget and/or  manpower to defend their assets and data against these serious security threats.

In Conclusion...

Awareness is the best defence against virus attacks and malware infections on your system or network environment.

Malware attacks still present significant challenges on a global scale for users at all levels, due to their sophistication and ability to evolve quickly.

The primary intent behind most attacks by hackers is compromising users accounts, collect sensitive information and stealing anything of value that can then be sold on for profit.

In light of the threats created by virus, malware and other malicious payload, security will continue to be an important part of information technology and corporate governance, so organisations and individual will need to step up the game and become more vigilant to pending threat - ready or not.