Cyber Attacks Rise By 63 Percent


Linklaters has warned that the number of significant cyber attacks has increased by more than 50 percent in the last three years. This comes as artificial intelligence is increasingly being used as a cybersecurity threat.

A fresh report from the global law company has reported that there were 67 significant cyber incidents worldwide from January to October 2018, as compared to the 41 incidents that were recorded in 2016.

The figures include attacks on defence and technology firms, government agencies, and financial crime with losses that amount to more than $1 million (£780,000).

A TMT partner at Linklaters, Tanguy Van Overstraeten, stated: “As the number of cyber incidents continues to rise and cybercriminals become more sophisticated, it’s likely we’ll see new technologies become increasingly vulnerable to exploitation.”

He added: “Examples of this could include the potential dual use of artificial intelligence as both a cyber threat as well as a cybersecurity solution and the creation of greater risks due to the increasing collection of data through the internet of things and machine to machine communications.”

Both Iran and North Korea have become more active in cybercrime over the past few years, with nation-states pointing the finger at them for various attacks across the globe.

North Korea is speculated to be behind seven incidents in 2018 as compared to three in 2016, while six incidents were connected to Iran, increasing from just one in 2016.

The United Kingdom was targeted five times in major cyber attacks during the first 10 months of last year, while the United States experienced 24 incidents during the same period.

In April 2018, a joint statement was released by the United States and the United Kingdom. It released a warning regarding the increasing cyber attacks against internet providers and government institutions that originate from Russian organisations.

Last October, Russia was also identified by GCHQ as the source of a campaign of malicious cyber attacks against political institutions, businesses, and media in the United Kingdom.

Some researchers have discovered that a Chinese cyber espionage group has been working with techniques that are associated with Russian groups when attacking firms in the United Kingdom in order to avoid attribution.