Cybercriminals taking malware quest to a new level: Report

Malware authors are developing complete business models around their efforts

A detailed study conducted by the R&D center of Quick Heal Technologies has made some rather intriguing suggestions regarding the future of malware. The findings of Quick Heal's Windows Malware report show an unabated growth in malicious and privacy-compromising vulnerabilities that are rapidly evolving and require a more integrated approach towards stopping the breaches.

According to the findings of the study, cyber criminals are taking the malware quest to an entirely new level where the business models are highly developed. After a thorough Research and Development, the malware authors are employing testing, marketing and even incorporating multiple language translations to have a wider geographical reach.

Even though Internet remains the most prominent way of propagating malware, researchers say that there is an increasing necessity to defend against supply chain threats with detection of malware on removable devices and even counterfeit networking hardware like USB flash drives, phone memory cards, and external hard drives etc. The malware can be inbuilt in to the computer system at manufacturing stage itself and be pre-designed in micro chips for various items like sensors, routers, switches etc.

Researchers have also unearthed a disturbing new development wherein cybercriminals seem to be making use of virtualization and cloud to launch attacks. They predict that the growing trove of data and information concentrated in these cloud storage services will attract hoards of cybercriminals. Here, hybrid methods of authentication and recovery will be of primary concern. This will not be restricted to the data alone but has to be extended to the protection of the cloud infrastructure which if exploited can be used to create botnets.

As per the study, attacks are no longer restricted to one particular platform and cyber security threats are becoming increasingly sophisticated with targeted attacks and cyber espionage, hacktivism, and forms of cyber war.

The risks posed by cybercrime to the public and private sectors' intellectual property, combined with the increasing threats to crucial infrastructure, requires combined efforts by global agencies and lawmakers, argue experts.

Noting that user awareness remains crucial in thwarting any attack instance, researchers say that risky behavior of the users still remains a major concern for security breaches. According to them, efforts must focus on educating and empowering end users. This also includes improved laws, collaboration, training, and crucial security investments. Zip Boots Designer Shoes

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