Cyberattacks on businesses soar 55 percent

Cyberattacks against businesses saw a major rise in recent months following a "sleepy" first half of the year, new research has revealed.

The latest quarterly report from Malwarebytes saw a 55 percent rise in the last three months as criminals upped their efforts, as well as the number of distinctive attacks.

This includes a major rise in the number of ransomware attacks as criminals look for "more bang for their buck", the company said, as well as a slight fall in the amount of such malware targeting consumers.

Malwarebytes named both the GandCrab and Maginber ransomware strains as particularly concerning, with both versions widening their target range to more countries as well as adding stronger encryption.

Trojans on the rise

Banking trojans were the most common threat to businesses detected by Malwarebytes, with an 84 percent increase compared to the previous quarter. 

This included both new variants but also stronger versions of older malware strains, with the Emotet modular trojan, which targets financial information, seeing a particularly large boost of 37 percent more detections.

"Q3 2018 proved that more and more cybercriminals are willing to put on their big boy pants and put their software to the test in a much larger arena — whether that’s going toe to toe with businesses who have more robust security practices (but much juicer, profitable targets) or spreading out into new geolocations," the report stated.

"The big story here is how many different malware authors (and thus different families and categories of threats) turned their attention at once to organizations, leaving their experimentation to the consumer side. However, consumers shouldn’t be lulled into a false sense of confidence. Continued evolution for ransomware variants, social engineering scams, and rogue browser extensions spells trouble ahead."

Mike Moore
Deputy Editor, TechRadar Pro

Mike Moore is Deputy Editor at TechRadar Pro. He has worked as a B2B and B2C tech journalist for nearly a decade, including at one of the UK's leading national newspapers and fellow Future title ITProPortal, and when he's not keeping track of all the latest enterprise and workplace trends, can most likely be found watching, following or taking part in some kind of sport.