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2010 Prominent for Targeted Assaults through Stuxnet and Hydraq: Symantec

Symantec, in its 16th Volume of Internet Security Threat Report or Norton Security Threat Report, highlights that fresh malware programs emerged enormously during 2010. Also, the year witnessed threats of fresh mega-trends wherein sophisticated and targeted assaults were launched on prestigious targets using the Hydraq and Stuxnet malware.

Evidently, Hydraq and Stuxnet prompted Craig Scroggie, Vice-President and Managing Director of Symantec to describe the year 2010 as the period that was prominent for targeted attacks. Nbr.co.nz published this on April 5, 2011.

Moreover according to the report, there were 286m distinct malware during 2010, accounting for a rise in web-based assaults by 93%. Also, owing to data infringements, 260,000 credentials got leaked out per infringement. The infringements occurred because of zero-day vulnerabilities and hacking, alternatively software vulnerabilities that developers were unaware of, all of which contributed significantly to the targeted assaults.

Meanwhile according to reports, the worm Stuxnet emerged during July 2010 when it struck Iran's Bushehr nuclear power facility along with other infrastructures, as well as more utilities worldwide. Although Stuxnet's damage wasn't long-lasting, it was well-refined and widespread. State the experts that the particular cyber-assault was the responsibility of everybody, from Israel to the Central Intelligence Agency.

Internet Security Specialist Con Mallon of Norton, while remarking about the Symantec report's above outcomes stated that, currently, cyber-criminals were found broadening their targets. Thus there was a shift from directly targeting private data, particularly bank accounts, of people to precise as well as complex attacks that aimed at the physical infrastructure and information of different countries, he noted. Pcadvisor.co.uk published this on April 5, 2011.

Furthermore, alongside the above mentioned observations, Symantec's research paper states that botnets, which are collections of hijacked PCs joined to form networks under the regulation of hackers, continued to pose an immense hazard for security companies during 2010. Rustock the biggest network-of-bots, for example, contained over 1m compromised PCs during 2010, with its controllers supplying portions of the botnet on rent, wherein 10,000 bots could be hired for just $15. Further, credit card details obtained via theft were available for 7 cents-$100 per card number, the report outlines.

Related article: “Loopholes did not cause online banking thefts”: ICBC

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