Threat potential from state actors

Threat potential from state actors

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The extent of the current threat situation is illustrated by a cyber attack that recently occurred in Ukraine. According to Ukraine's State Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-UA), an unnamed state-owned company was compromised, infecting around 2.000 computers with the DIRTYMOE (PURPLEFOX) malware.

It is a modular malware that allows attackers remote access and is primarily used for distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks. The exact impact on Ukrainian operations was not disclosed. Globally, the number of cyberattack attempts increased by more than 2023 percent in 104, according to Armis' latest report, "The Anatomy of Cybersecurity: A Dissection of 2023's Attack Landscape." The research also highlights that not only are the number of attack attempts increasing, but blind spots and critical vulnerabilities are also growing within organizations, making them easy targets for increasingly well-equipped threat actors.

No relaxation in sight

The geopolitical tensions and the associated cyber war led to an intensification of the threat situation last year and no easing is expected. On the contrary: most of the attacks came from Chinese and Russian actors and primarily affected organizations in the manufacturing industry and public administration. In the manufacturing sector, .cn and .ru domains contributed to an average of 30 percent of monthly attack attempts. The extent of the threat is illustrated by the observed growth rates of cyber attacks at utility companies of over 200 percent and at manufacturing companies of 165 percent.

The recent incident in Ukraine and the security experts' investigations reveal the diverse challenges facing organizations worldwide. An important factor is the segmentation of legacy technologies, which can improve network performance and protect critical assets. Prioritizing vulnerabilities and using AI-driven technologies also help companies build effective defense and robust attack surface management. Increased attacks are to be expected this year too.

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About Armis

Armis, the cybersecurity asset intelligence company, protects the entire attack surface and manages the organization's cyber risk in real-time. In a rapidly evolving, borderless world, Armis ensures companies can continuously see, protect and manage all critical assets.

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