2013 review: Cyber security round-up

We review the year’s lessons in the realm of information security

Tags: Cyber crimeCyberoamESETEgyptGoogle IncorporatedKaspersky LabSaudi ArabiaSyriaTrend Micro IncorporatedUSA
  • E-Mail 2013 review: Cyber security round-up It is a paranoid time for digital consumers, for companies and even for governments.
By  Stephen McBride Published  December 22, 2013

The largest DDoS attack on record; governments spying on our every move; phishing attacks and mobile malware on the rise. It is a paranoid time for digital consumers, for companies and even for governments. The digital universe is a playground for criminals and malcontents and there appears to be no protection from what is out there.

The year certainly gave us enough to worry about. Keeping our data safe appeared all the more urgent following a number of attacks on banks in the region and in the US. In particular RAKBANK and Bank of Muscat's $45m brush with cyber criminals in a credit card theft was high-profile enough to get the average user thinking, "How safe is my data?"

The IT security industry is a hype-heavy sector. In 2012, it made great capital from the attacks on Saudi Aramco and Ras Gas, but the message was getting lost. Targeted attacks such as these should not be the concern of the average citizen. Of far greater concern is the phishing attack, the malicious link and the vulnerabilities that riddle operating systems and apps.

Android vulnerabilities have led to an unprecedented amount of malware, all of it just a careless click away, and phishing attacks become ever-more sophisticated, so much so that mere vigilance is not enough.

The efforts being made by security companies to catalogue the dangers continue. Senior cyber-sec executives continually refer to the Cyber War. While this may ostensibly by hyperbole, it is perhaps prudent to know your enemy, even an imagined one. To that end, we review the year in cyber security.

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