This report could not be more timely in a year that hacking made major headlines. Retailers like Target saw millions of customers’ credit card information stolen and of course there is the great Sony hack of 2014.
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The top five malware returned the highest ROI for hackers with the least effort per dollar -which was achieved by recycling code and using the same methods from previous malware attacks to once again inflict damage. There were 35 reused components in the top five attacks.
1st place: Snake – Most advanced malware of the group, active the longest (since 2005), and includes 12 reused components.
2nd place: Black PoS – $200M+ damage, available online for purchase for as little as $1, 800, eight recycled components.
3rd place: Gyges – Government malware gone rogue, reuse of “Government Standard” cyber-stealth tools in cybercrime malware, eight recycled components.
4th place: Dragonfly – Operated undetected for three years, focused on cyber espionage, six reused components.
5th place: ZBerp – Hit 450 financial institutions around the world, four recycled components.
While typical rankings of worst security breaches focus on the financial consequences of the most infamous hacks and the headlines generated by them, this report focuses on the degree to which these breaches could have been avoided, and the ease with which recycled malware is used to achieve maximum impact. The analysis reveals a harsh investment asymmetry, wherein the cost and effort of attacks continues to plummet for hackers, while the financial and manpower investments to detect and prevent attacks sharply increase.
“Some of the worst attacks of this year could have been avoided, saving companies, governments and consumers millions of dollars, ” said CyActive Co-founder and CEO Liran Tancman.
The analysis, which covers malware that wreaked havoc on financial institutions, retailers and governments, sheds light on the phenomenon of reuse, and how simple it can be for attackers to cause millions of dollars in damage for a mere fraction of the cost of cyber-defense.
CyActive boasts that it has developed an unprecedented ability to automatically forecast the future and that it is the first to offer proactive detection of future malware before it has ever seen the light of day. It is backed by JVP, Israel’s leading venture capital firm, and by the Venture Capital Unit of Siemens.