Advanced Threats

In 2017, SonicWall Capture Labs discovered 56 million new forms of malware from across the globe. Threat actors are constantly creating updates to known versions of malware to get past defenses that rely on identifying malware (i.e., signatures). The forms of security that stop malware and ransomware based on signatures are only effective if they can identify the strain.
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To proactively protect networks and data in today’s fast-moving cyber arms race, organizations must be able to collect, analyze and apply threat intelligence to make smart and agile security decisions. For some organizations, this is part of everyday life — even if it’s still increasingly difficult. For others, it’s just not possible based on company size, expertise, budget or any number of challenging factors.
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As we know, email is the most popular attack vector used by threat actors to carry out targeted cyber attacks. In fact, more than 90 percent of cyber attacks start with a phishing email campaign. It is the easiest way for a cyber criminal to enter a network and execute tactics to accomplish an objective — be it data exfiltration, delivering a malicious payload or phishing for credentials.
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Since the shocking announcement of serious Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities in early 2018, we have yet to hear of a mega-breach that would signal the start of another vicious hacking year. Has it been luck? Are our network security defenses stronger? Or are current hacks hiding their efforts? Whatever the situation, the expectations from lessons learned in historical security events are that hacking tools will evolve and new threat vectors will emerge — year after year.
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Cyber security professionals exist in an increasingly complex world. As the cyber threat landscape evolves, a new cyber arms race has emerged that places organizations and their security solutions in the crosshairs of a growing global criminal industry. Cyber criminals are increasingly turning to highly effective advanced cyber weapons, such as ransomware, infostealers, IoT exploits and TLS/SSL encrypted attacks, to target organizations of all sizes around the world.
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The cyber security industry relies on perpetual cadence of collaboration, research, analysis and review. For SonicWall, that comes via our in-depth cyber threat report. This year, we’re excited to announce that we will publish the 2018 SonicWall Cyber Threat Report on Tuesday, March 6. This premier cyber security industry report puts you a step ahead of cyber criminals in the global cyber war, empowering you with proprietary security data, global knowledge and latest trends, gathered and analyzed by our leading-edge SonicWall Capture Labs Threat Network.
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malware code
One of the key characteristics of advanced malware is the use of many tactics to evade detection. In addition to defeating signature-based detection products and behavior-based detection tools, there are hundreds of evasion techniques advanced malware uses to avoid detection. Moreover, a malware object will typically deploy multiple tactics. While there are hundreds of specific tactics to evade detection, they fall into six key categories.
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As Australians return to work after the holiday season, IT teams across the country will be pushing to make sure they are prepared for the implementation of the Notifiable Data Breach (NDB) amendment, which takes effect on 22 February. It is important to point out that many businesses have had nearly a whole year in which executives and IT teams should have worked together to ensure their business networks are secure.
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Malware often incorporates advanced techniques to evade analysis and discovery by firewalls and sandboxes. When malware sees evidence that dynamic analysis is occurring, it can invoke different techniques to evade analysis, such as mimicking the behavior of harmless files that are typically ignored by threat detection systems. Traditional sandboxing approaches that signal their own presence — for example, by instrumenting underlying virtual machines (VM) to intercept malicious function calls — make the analysis environment visible.
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History is full of people who’ve labored over missed opportunities. Like all other non-bitcoin-owning people, I am one of them. I first heard of cryptocurrency in early 2013 and scoffed at the idea that something with no intrinsic or collectable value would trade for $20. The concept of owning a portion of a cryptographic code — and it having actual value — is still hard for many to swallow.
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