by MTHULISI SIBANDA
JOHANNESBURG – ALTHOUGH ransomware’s share of incidents in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) held steady at 18 percent, globally defenders were more successful detecting and preventing ransomware in 2022.
Despite this, attackers continued to innovate, with the average time to complete a ransomware attack dropped from two months down to less than four days.
This is according to the annual IBM Security X-Force Threat Intelligence Index.
According to the 2023 report, the deployment of backdoors, which allow remote access to systems, emerged as the top action by attackers in the MEA region last year.
Backdoor deployments were detected in 27 percent of the cases X-Force responded to in this region in 2022.
Ransomware and worms tied for the second-most common attack type in the region at 18 percent each.
The uptick in backdoor deployments can be partially attributed to their high market value. X-Force observed threat actors selling existing backdoor access for as much as $10 000. Stolen credit card data sells for less than $10 per card.
As organizations across the MEA region try to address the ever-evolving cyber threats landscape, Frida Kleimert Knibbs, Security Leader at IBM MEA, stressed the critical role of threat intelligence in safeguarding against these threats.
“Proactively managing security risks and evolving cybercrime tactics is a critical priority for organizations across MEA,” she said.
“The X-Force Threat Intelligence Index findings demonstrate the continued threat of ransomware and the increasing use of thread hijacking tactics.”
Knibbs said to safeguard against these threats, it is imperative that companies remain vigilant and focus on effective incident response planning.
“As the security landscape evolves, it is crucial to prioritize threat intelligence and strengthen defenses,” she advised.
– CAJ News