NEWS

Cyberattacks Surge 30 Percent Over Last 4 Months, IBM Says

By Matthew Harwood

There has been a "startling" surge of security events online over the past four months, according to IBM's X-Force, an elite team of IT security experts.

X-Force experts discovered two disconcerting developments:

First, they identified a 30 percent increase in network and web-based security events over the last 120 days, with the total number rising from 1.8 billion to more than 2.5 billion worldwide per day, according to data pulled from its managed security services client base of approximately 3700 clients worldwide. Second, IBM detected a 40 percent increase within the last 120 days in its clients' access of IBM virtual security operations centres. IBM's managed security services clients - businesses and governments around the world - can use the virtual operations centres (VSOC's) to monitor and verify network and web-based attacks. A significant portion of the increase came from clients that had not previously logged in to the security operations centres in more than six months.

Val Rahmani, IBM's general manager of Internet Security Systems, said the recent rash of security events is due to the "perfect storm" of business cost-cutting, insider threats rising, and cybercriminals using the confusion to devise opportunistic new strategies to prey on unsuspecting victims.

To weather the storm, IBM says its Internet Security Systems division will introduce new identity and access management services. Forty-two percent of system vulnerabilities, according to the firm, can be traced back to this area.

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