Hackers increase attacks on manufacturing companies
Across the world, cyberattacks increased by 24 per cent in the second quarter of 2017 compared to the first quarter, according to the latest threat intelligence report published by NTT Security. From the statistics, it appears that manufacturing companies are the biggest targets of cybercriminals.
The research has found that the increase in cyberattacks is due to enhanced methods of phishing and reconnaissance as cybercriminals turn their attention to locating servers with poor or easily penetrable protection. Also, these criminals have started embedding malicious content in documents that they send as attachments. This became extremely popular during the second quarter of this year.
A little over a third of the reported attacks targeted manufacturing companies, followed by finance companies and those in the healthcare industry. It appears that over the last few years, cyberattacks are consistently targeting the manufacturing industry.
Rebecca Taylor, Senior Vice President of the US’ National Centre for Manufacturing Sciences, stated that systems in the manufacturing sector have been designed for productivity rather than security. Hence, every manufacturing company is at risk of being hacked.
Jon Heimerl, Manager of the Threat Intelligence Communication Team at NTT Security, pointed out that the report reveals that hackers are consistently attacking the manufacturing industry, and therefore, CISOs operating in this segment should take the report seriously. Most attacks are perpetrated with the aim of extorting money, stealing data and committing industrial espionage.
Mr Heimerl added that if an attack is successful and is not detected by an organisation, it lets the cybercriminals have complete control over the network, which has the potential to wreak havoc. This is a major problem, since nearly 37 per cent of respondents who took part in the survey stated that they do not have any plan in place to respond to breaches and cyberattacks.
Breaches in manufacturing companies not only affect the companies themselves but also their suppliers, consumers and other related industries, said Mr. Heimerl. Manufacturers should not neglect IT security and should be willing to invest in state-of-the-art technology to protect themselves and other stakeholders.
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