Symantec: Cyberespionage Targeting SMBs, Manufacturing

Targeted attacks increased 42 percent last year.


You Can't Detect What You Can't See: Illuminating the Entire Kill Chain

The latest Internet Security Threat Report from vendor Symantec highlights a disturbing increase in targeted attacks, particularly those aimed at small business. Web-based attacks and mobile malware are also on the rise.

Emily Chung with CBC News reported, "Smaller companies, their websites and their intellectual property are increasingly being targeted by cyberattacks, a new report on IT security trends says. Targeted attacks were up 42 percent in 2012 compared to the year before, and businesses with fewer than 250 employees are the fastest growing segment being targeted, according to the annual internet security threat report issued Tuesday by Symantec."

ZDNet's Charlie Osborne added, "Targeted cyberattacks based on IP theft are being conducted against both the manufacturing industry and smaller businesses, which are likely to have less income to invest in shoring up their defenses against attack. Symantec says that SMBs -- with fewer than 250 employees -- now account for 31 percent of targeted attacks, and are often seen as a means to gain access to larger firms through 'watering hole' techniques."

Investor's Business Daily quoted Symantec's Liam O'Murchu, who said, "What we're seeing is attackers starting to use targeted attacks more broadly. It used to be they'd target big companies to get their big data. But we've seen attackers targeting smaller suppliers in the supply chain ... to get smaller bits of information that are not so well-protected."

Nathan Eddy with eWeek noted that the report also discussed mobile attacks, writing, "Last year, mobile malware increased by 58 percent, and 32 percent of all mobile threats attempted to steal information, such as email addresses and phone numbers. While Apple's iOS had the most documented vulnerabilities, it only had one threat discovered during the same period. Android, by contrast, had fewer vulnerabilities but more threats than any other mobile operating system."

Tags: SMB, Symantec, cyberattack, cyber espionage, security threats

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