Ransomware no longer biggest cyber security threat, report finds

Ransomware attacks are becoming less prevalent as cyber criminals look to news way of attacking a system, a new report has found.

 

Instead, hackers are turning towards hidden HTTPs tunnels that appear as normal encrypted web traffic to target healthcare organisations.

 

The Vectra 2019 Spotlight Report on Healthcare identified Internet of Things (IoT) devices; unpartitioned networks; and reliance on out-dated systems, as weakness most likely to be exploited by cybercriminals looking to steal personal information and disrupt organisations.

 

It called for greater use of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to detect hidden threats in IT networks before they can be exploited by hackers.

 

According to the report, ransomware, which was used in the WannaCry attack on the NHS two years ago, has become much less prevalent in the second half of 2018.

 

Attacks in which hackers hide their command-and-control communications in HTTPS tunnels, which often looks like service provider traffic, were the most common type of attack, according to the US-based AI company.

 

“Behaviours that point to the use of external remote access tools are the second most-common detections in healthcare,” the report said.

 

“Although these behaviours are consistent with cyberattack command-and-control communications, these behaviours also occur when healthcare organisations communicate with independent labs, imaging centres and other service providers.”

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