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2023 cyber security attack trends you should watch out for

The year has only just begun, and as we look towards the possibilities to come in 2023, it’s time to plan for resilience in the face of growing cyber attacks.

68% of surveyed business leaders feel that cyber security risks are getting worse. They have a good reason. Attacks continue to get more sophisticated.

In 2021, the average number of global cyber attacks increased by 15.1%.

To protect your business in the new year, it’s important to keep up-to-date with the new trends and methods hackers are using. What types of attacks are increasing in volume?

Being aware of these things is important. It helps you update your IT security to mitigate the risk of a data breach or malware infection.

Here are the cyber attack trends you need to watch out for…

Attacks on 5G devices
5G as a topic and buzzword has been around for a few years and it is beginning to fulfil the promise of fast internet. As providers build out the infrastructure, you can expect this to be a high-attack area.

Hackers are looking to take advantage of the 5G hardware used for routers, mobile devices, and PCs. Anytime there is a new technology, it’s bound to have some code vulnerabilities. This is exactly what hackers are looking to exploit.

How can you prepare?
You can prepare by being aware of the firmware security in the devices you buy. This is especially true for those devices that have 5G enabled. Some manufacturers will build better firmware security into their designs than others. Make sure to ask about this when purchasing new devices.

One-time password (OTP) bypass
This new trend is designed to get past one of the very best forms of account security. Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) is well-known as very effective at preventing fraudulent sign-in attempts.

It can stop account take overs even in cases where the criminal has the user’s passwords.

There are a few different ways that hackers try to bypass MFA. These include:
 - Re-using a token – Gaining access to a recent user OTP and trying to revise it
 - Sharing unused tokens – The hacker uses their own account to get an OTP. Then attempts to use that OTP on a different account
 - Leaked token – Using an OTP token leaked through a web application
 - Password reset function – A hacker uses phishing to fool the end user into re-setting a password. They then trick them into handing over their OTP via text or email

Attacks surrounding world events
During the pandemic, the cyber attacks volume increased by 600%. Large criminal groups have realised that world events and disasters are lucrative.

They launch a phishing campaign during a time of unrest. Attacks come for everything from the latest hurricane or typhoon to the war in Ukraine.

Unsuspecting people often fall for these scams. This is because they are often distracted by the crisis.
People need to be mindful of scams surrounding events like these. They will often use social engineering tactics, such as sad photos to play on people’s emotions.

Smishing and mobile device attacks
Mobile devices go with us everywhere these days. This direct connection to a potential victim is not lost on cyber criminals. Look for more mobile device-based attacks, including SMS-based phishing (smishing) in 2023.

Many people aren’t expecting to receive fake messages to personal numbers. But mobile numbers are no longer as private. Hackers buy lists of them online. They then craft convincing texts that look like shipping notices or receipts. One wrong click is all it takes for an account or data breach.

Mobile malware is also on the rise. During the first few months of 2022, malware targeted towards mobile devices rose by 500%. It’s important to have good mobile anti-malware. As well as other protections on your device, such as a DNS filter.

Elevated phishing using AI and Machine Learning
Phishing emails are not so easy to spot. It used to be that they nearly always had spelling errors or grainy images. While some still do, most don’t.

Criminal groups elevate today’s phishing using AI and machine learning. Not only will it look identical to a real brand’s emails, but it will also come personalised. Hackers use these tactics to capture more victims. They allow hackers to send out more targeted phishing messages in less time than in years past.

Schedule a cyber security check-up today
Is your business prepared for the cyber threats coming in 2023? Don’t wait to find out. Give us a call and schedule a cyber security check-up to stay one step ahead of the digital criminals. You can call 0330 088 2565 or visit our Contact page.

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