Hired hackers ranked as the biggest cybersecurity threat, cryptojacking is also popular

Why is it important: Cybercriminals have taken advantage of the pandemic by using attacks to extract as much monetary value as possible. EU cybersecurity agency Enisa stressed that such activities have resulted in hired hackers becoming the biggest threat to online security in the past 15 months.

Enisa said in her annual report that covers the study carried out From April 2020 to July 2021, the Covid-19 pandemic saw cybercriminals intensify their efforts to target potential victims.

“The Covid-19 crisis has created opportunities for adversaries who have used the pandemic as their main bait in campaigns, such as email attacks. Monetization appears to be the main driver of this activity, ”the agency said.

One of the notable ransomware attacks was the Colonial Pipeline incident, when the DarkSide hacker group discovered a security breach found in the operator’s digital infrastructure. This ultimately led to the closure of the fuel line serving the US East Coast.

Other key methods targeted by attackers were phishing emails and brute-force attacks on Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) services, which remain the two most common vectors of infection.

Unsurprisingly, cryptocurrency was the preferred payment method for hackers. Other cyberthreat areas experiencing growth include cryptojacking, in which criminals secretly use the computing power of a target to generate cryptocurrency, according to the study.

As Bitcoin and other coins are skyrocketing to record heights, expect this particular threat to remain an attractive option in the near future. Bitcoin transactions worth $ 5.2 billion are already linked to ransomware.

The nine main threat groups identified are ransomware, malware, cryptojacking, email threats, data threats, availability and integrity threats, disinformation / disinformation, non-malware, and supply chain attacks.

A recent report from a cloud security firm found that some cybercrime services cost less than $ 500. What’s more, hackers can be hired to do certain jobs like credit card fraud or identity theft for as little as $ 250.

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