TOP-6 information threats – predictions for 2013 from Fortinet

Posted: December 22, 2012 in Articles
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FortinetAmong the key risks – sophisticated targeted attacks on mobile devices and applications, active use of malicious IPv6 shelters and exploits.

1. The purpose of APT attacks will be mobile users

APT attacks, the so-called sophisticated targeted threats (Advanced Persistent Threats), named No. 1 threat because of their ability to use a variety of techniques and the latest technology for simultaneous attack from all sides. All these actions are clearly aimed at achieving a specific goal – to gain access to confidential information. A few recent examples of victims: Stuxnet, Flame and Gauss. Analysts expect that in 2013, the main purpose of APT attacks will shift to the private individuals, executives, politicians, and public figures. Confirm this forecast will be extremely difficult, in part because, after hackers managed to gain access to desired data, they can easily remove malware from the target device before the victim realizes what has happened. Moreover, it is hardly a person who have been victims of such attacks, will report the incident to the media, as it is in the first place will affect their personal reputation, and not on the company, public or government organization. In turn, attackers will actively seek out the information that they could use for criminal purposes, such as blackmail or industrial espionage in order to obtain compensation.

2. Growth of malware for mobile devices will exceed performance for laptops and desktops

To date, hackers are actively developing malicious code for mobile platforms, as well as laptop and desktop PCs. Historically, much of the effort focused on the latter, because they are much more used and there longer. Assessing the future, analysts FortiGuard Labs discovered that now the share of mobile platforms has over 50,000 types of threats that against a few million PC looks insignificant. But, given the growth rate, the situation may change radically in the next year. This is also due to the fact that at present the market is much more mobile than a laptop or desktop PC, and users are increasingly moving away from these traditional platforms in favor of new, small tablets. FortiGuard Labs researchers believe that it will take several years before the number of mobile malware samples with equal numbers PC. But the acceleration of growth of malicious programs for mobile platforms will be an important trend as early as next year, as the creators of malware are well aware that the security of today’s mobile devices more difficult than the protection of traditional PCs.

3. Two-factor authentication ousted simple passwords

Firewalls with a single password only completely outdated. Simple tools that can now download any interested person can crack simple passwords of 4-5 characters in minutes. Using the new cloud service to crack, anyone can pick up passwords at a rate of more than 15 million attempts per minute, paying twenty-minute session is less than 20 U.S. dollars. Today even the most complex multi-character passwords generated using numbers, letters, special characters and different registers can be skomprometirovanny less than an hour. Encrypted database account information Web resources (often hacked through Web portals and SQL injection) and / or access to wireless networks (WPA2) are commonly the target of attacks by using cloud services for burglary. Next year, many companies have not already, be transferred its customers, employees and partners in two-factor authentication, which will consist of a portion of a password known to the user and an additional part – time password received on a mobile device, or a token is generated.

4. Operation holes at intercomputer interaction

Intercomputer interaction (Machine-to-Machine, M2M) – the general name of technologies that allow machines to communicate with one another, or pass it unilaterally. It can be wired or wireless monitoring sensors or any device parameters. For example, a refrigerator, which tells the home server, and that in turn will notify the owner of the need to buy eggs and milk, or a video camera at the airport, to the snapshot, passing control of the server, which verifies the photos to the database of known terrorists. Or medical equipment that monitors vital signs and inform staff about changing parameters. Despite the bright prospects of the use of such technologies in various fields, with the ability to reduce the risks associated with human error, it is still a lot of questions to their safety and security. Experts predict that next year the incidents of burglary at M2M systems are not rare. His attention to intruders, most likely, will focus on national security and weapons development.

5. Mechanism for bypassing the ‘sandbox’

Common technology ‘Sandbox’ is usually a tightly controlled set of resources with limited or emulated network access, the ability to communicate with the host operating system or read from input devices. The more developers use the same principle to protect their systems, there are more criminals try to work around it. FortiGuard Labs analysts repeatedly clashed with the export, able to break into the virtualized environment and the “sandbox”, such as using the vulnerability Adobe Reader X. Next year is expected to appear a lot of innovative exports that have a ‘cheat sandbox’, particularly on mobile devices.

6. Cross-platform botnet

Analyzing mobile botnets such as Zitmo, experts FortiGuard Labs found that they have much in common with botnets, built on the basis of conventional PCs. In 2013, the union of these two technologies will lead to new forms of DoS-attacks. So infected mobile devices and PCs will be managed with the same command server (C & C) and control systems, in the same time, increasing the efficiency and power of a botnet. What had previously been two separate botnets, on PCs and mobile operating systems such as Android, will be the most powerful single monolithic botnet on different types of endpoints.

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