The U.S. has been very aggressive in deploying cyber attacks in recent years, and it appears that subsequent concerns that America invited attacks on vulnerable U.S. networks were well-founded.In fact, U.S. companies are just beginning to realise the increasingly novel dangers of all-out cyberwarfare.
Last week Nicole Perlroth of The New York Times reported that a recent cyber attack on major U.S. banks were so powerful because they were directed through hijacked data centres (i.e. the cloud) around the would instead of individual computers.
The unprecedented attack, dubbed “Itsoknoproblembro,” transformed various cloud and public Web hosting services into powerful beams that simultaneously fired traffic at each banking site until it slowed or collapsed.
Yo Delmar, Vice President of GRC Solutions at MetricStream, told BI that the attacks indicate that a growing number of “motivated fraudsters” — whether they are savvy individuals or determined nation-states — are taking advantage of “new opportunities for exposure” created by the explosion of big data and the way information is now shared and accessed over numerous devices.
Steve Sacks, a representative of private cyber-countermeasures and surveillance company Fireeye, told BI how hackers can now commit ‘polymorphous’ attacks in which they constantly change code to penetrate a system.
“[There are] entire little villages dedicated to malware in Russia, villages in China, very sophisticated very organised, very well-funded,” Sacks said. “It’ll be 50 guys in a room, changing the attack [as it happens].”
Delmar noted that the recent attacks have served as a wake-up call to U.S. companies that they are in the cyber crossfire of a very real conflict.
“When necessary investments are not made, it oftentimes takes a compelling event – such as an attack – to mobilize the enterprise and everyone within it to focus on funding and building new programs that improve intelligence and overall cyber defence,” she said.
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