10 Likely (and Vulnerable) Targets for Cyberattacks
Cyber breaches are taking a heavy toll on an increasing number of industries, sectors, organizations and others.
The cost of data breaches will increase from $3 trillion each year to more than $5 trillion in 2024, at an average annual growth rate of 11%, according to a new report from Juniper Research. This primarily will be driven by increasing fines for data breaches as regulation tightens, as well as a greater amount of business lost as enterprises become more digitally dependent.
And cyber breaches are expected to increase nearly 70% during the next five years, Juniper said.
So who’s being targeted and why?
Anand Kashyap, Fortanix’s co-founder and CTO, tells us a particular target may be attractive for cybercriminals for any of the following reasons: It may have inadequate security controls in place, thus increasing the likelihood of success for an attack; it may possess very sensitive and valuable information or data; it may be so large that the financial reward for even a small-scale attack may be large; or it may be part of critical infrastructure.
“Inadequate security plays a big factor in being targeted,” he said. “Cybercriminals will often go for an easier target. This encompasses everything from not following best security practices, using unpatched or unvetted software, improperly trained employees, and lack of use of adequate encryption and key management. Many targets are not high-tech companies and lack security expertise and even personnel to build a strong security solution.”
Angelo Rodriguez, Infocyte’s director of sales engineering, tells us like any criminals, cyber thieves would be interested in the value of the target, but also driven by opportunity.
“Any organization that isn’t moving toward taking a proactive approach to security, meaning constant monitoring and closing of the attack surface, is going to provide an opportunity for someone to get in,” he said. “Some of this is basic IT hygiene — identify where you are vulnerable and close those gaps so that even if what you have is valuable, the opportunity to attack is closed down, or at least greatly reduced.”
In the slideshow above, we take a look at who cybercriminals are targeting most, including those making big headlines and others that tend to fly under the radar.