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2013 Predictions For Computer Security Threats And Cyber Warfare

2013 Predictions For Computer Security Threats And Cyber Warfare

Some 2013 predictions have computer security becoming increasingly difficult in the new year. Cyber warfare is also of concern, with the real potential of nations like Iran and North Korea attempting to lash out at the world with increasingly sophisticated viruses and malware.

As previously reported by The Inquisitr, many of the top 2013 predictions involve new security threats and scams related to smartphones and tablets. Social media and web applications on the Cloud may also be a newer source of threats. Wade Baker, principal author of the Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR), told DarkReading that the biggest data threat in 2013 is likely to be “low-and-slow attacks” involving popular web apps:

“The most likely threats involve authentication attacks and failures, continued espionage and hacktivism attacks, Web application exploits and social engineering…. Organizations that choose to take their chances and ignore secure application development and assessment practices in 2013 are asking for trouble.”

Cyber security is not just a threat to the average person, even nations are under the gun when it comes “key national security threats.” According to the National Journal, the United States Department of Defense feels that internet-based warfare warrants being number three in the top list of threats:

“Defense Secretary Leon Panetta recently outlined new warfare terrain: the Internet. Cybersecurity concerns do not simply include hackers and criminals. Panetta said the greater danger is a cyberattack carried out by nation states or extremist groups that could be as destructive as the terrorist attack on Sept. 11, 2001, and ‘virtually paralyze the nation’.”

If you will recall, cyber warfare is already being implemented in the Middle East, with an implanted virus slowing Iran’s efforts to produce nuclear power plants and possibly nuclear weapons. The Flame virus — which takes over local wireless networks and uses laptops and smartphones to spy on and record information — is apparently based upon an earlier version of Stuxnet from 2010 and was so sophisticated that Cyber experts widely believe Stuxnet, and thus presumably Flame and miniFlame, are American projects.

The computer security company Sophos predicts the following “five trends will factor into the IT security landscape in 2013″ in their Security Threat Report 2013:

  • More of the same such as SQL injection hacks of web servers and databases.
  • Since 2012 saw a surge of “ransomware malware which encrypts your data and holds it for ransom,” expect to see more “irreversible malware.”
  • Cybercrooks will develop more toolkits like the Blackhole exploit kit that will have even more premium features.
  • There might be better exploit mitigation, so vulnerability exploits may decrease as social engineering attacks sharply increase.
  • As mobile devices and applications like social media, or NFC and GPS become more integrated, expect cybercrooks to find “increasingly creative” ways to compromise our security or privacy.

These 2013 predictions are probably not the ones you want to hear, but these threats are real. What do you plan on doing differently in 2013 to keep your computer and smart devices safe?

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