The new year has just begun and it’s a time to plan for the possibilities to come in 2023. It’s also a time when you need to plan for resiliency in the face of ever-present cyber threats.
68% of surveyed business leaders* feel that cybersecurity risks are getting worse. After some major cyber-attacks in 2022 that included major Australian operations, they have a good reason. Attacks continue to get more sophisticated and are often perpetrated by big criminal organisations.
Cybercrime will cost companies worldwide an estimated $10.5 trillion annually by 2025, up from $3 trillion in 2015. At a growth rate of 15 % year over year — Cybersecurity Ventures also reports that cybercrime represents the greatest transfer of economic wealth in history.**
To protect your business in the coming year, it’s important to watch the attack trends. What new methods are hackers using? What types of attacks are increasing in volume?
Knowing these things is important. It helps you better update your IT systems to mitigate the risk of a data breach or malware infection.
Here are the attack trends that you need to watch out for.
Attacks on 5G Devices
The world has been buzzing about 5G for a few years. It is finally beginning to fulfill the promise of lightning-fast internet. As providers build out the infrastructure, you can expect this to be a high-attack area.
Cyber-Criminals are looking to take advantage of the 5G hardware used for routers, mobile devices and PCs. Anytime you have a new technology like this, it’s bound to have some code vulnerabilities. This is exactly what hackers are looking to exploit.
You can prepare by being aware of the firmware security in the devices you buy. This is especially true for those enabled for 5G. Some manufacturers will build better firmware security into their designs than others. Make sure to ask about this when purchasing new devices.
One-time Password (OTP) Bypass
This alarming new trend is designed to get past one of the best forms of account security. Multi-factor authentication (MFA) is well-known as very effective at preventing fraudulent sign-in attempts. It can stop account takeovers even in cases where the criminal has the user’s password.
There are a few different ways that hackers try to bypass MFA. These include:
- Reusing a token: Gaining access to a recent user OTP and trying to reuse it
- Sharing unused tokens: The hacker uses their own account to get an OTP. Then attempts to use that OTP on a different account.
- Leaked token: Using an OTP token leaked through a web application.
- Password reset function: A hacker uses phishing to fool the user into resetting a password. They then trick them into handing over their OTP via text or email.
Attacks Surrounding World Events
During the pandemic, the cyberattack volume increased by approximately 600%***. Attacks come for everything from the latest hurricane or typhoon to the war in Ukraine. Unsuspecting people often fall for these scams, because they are distracted by the crisis.
People need to be especially mindful of scams surrounding events like these. They will often use social engineering tactics, such as sad photos to play on the emotions.
Smishing & Mobile Device Attacks
Mobile devices are with us just about everywhere these days. This direct connection to a potential victim is not lost on cybercriminals. Look for more mobile device-based attacks, including SMS-based phishing (“smishing”).
Many people aren’t expecting to receive fake messages to their personal numbers. But phone numbers are no longer as private as they once were. Hackers can buy lists of them online. They then craft convincing fake texts that look like shipping notices or receipts. One wrong click is all it takes for an account or data breach.
Elevated Phishing Using AI & Machine Learning
These days, phishing emails are not so easy to spot. It used to be that they nearly always had spelling errors or grainy images. While some still do, most don’t.
Criminal groups elevate today’s phishing using AI and machine learning. Not only will it look identical to a real brand’s email look and feel, but it will also come personalised. Hackers use these tactics to capture more victims. AI also allows for more targeted phishing messages being sent in less time than in years past.
Is your business prepared for the cyber threats coming in 2023? Don’t wait to find out the hard way! Give us a call and schedule a cybersecurity check-up today.