The Cyberthreat Handbook

The cyber-threat landscape is extremely diversified, and knowing one's enemies can be particularly complex in this world of subterfuge and deception. Thales and Verint have recently released The Cyberthreat Handbook, a report designed to provide insights into the most significant groups of global cyber-attackers.

Thales and Verint experts have worked together to find out more about cyber attackers and the techniques they employ, the purpose being to help organisations in the private and public sectors to better detect and anticipate future attacks. 

The Handbook details the activities of approximately 60 major groups of cyber-attackers throughout the world, discovering that almost half of the groups analysed were state-sponsored, often aiming to steal sensitive data from targets of geopolitical interest. Just over a quarter were named as ideologically-motivated hacktivists, followed by financially-driven cyber-criminals and cyber-terrorists.

The  Handbook also offers a warning  that all the world’s major economic, political and military powers are priority targets of cyber attackers, and that the sectors most targeted are nation states and their defense capabilities, followed by the financial sector, energy and transportation.

It also notes that a growing number of groups of attackers are now focusing on vulnerabilities in the supply chain, and in particular on smaller partners, suppliers and service providers that are used as Trojans to access major targets. Analysts from Thales and Verint have defined four major categories of attackers based on their motives and ultimate objectives. 

  • Out of approximately sixty major groups of attackers analysed, 49% are state-sponsored groups often aiming to steal sensitive data from targets of geo-political interest. 
  •  26% are ideologically motivated hacktivists. 
  •  Cyber-criminals (20%) who are driven by financial gain. 
  •  Cyber-terrorists account for 5% of the groups analysed.

The 12 countries in the world with the highest GDP are all at the top of the list of targets, headed by the United States, Russia, the European Union (particularly the United Kingdom, France and Germany) and China, followed by India, South Korea and Japan.

 “The Thales and Verint teams are immensely proud to release this report as part of its technology and domain expertise cooperation.... Unique in its breadth and depth, it is the culmination of many months of research, investigation and painstaking analysis and correlation of relevant data. As cyber-threats proliferate and evolve, cyber-security clearly has a major role to play, particularly for critical infrastructure providers.” said Marc Darmon, EVP, of Thales secure communications and information systems division.

Elad Sharon, president, Verint Cyber Intelligence Solutions, added: “This report generates unique insights and knowledge into cyber and security experts” and can be used, “to mitigate and foresee cyber-attacks.”

Thales Group:        Infosecurity:       MobileWorld

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