Nine out of ten hackers can break through cyber security defences and into the systems they target within 12 hours. And for almost all of them, identifying and stealing the data they are after is the work of just another 12 hours.
Hackers are quick. Their victims however are not and it’s frequently hundreds of days before the theft is discovered. The Nuix Black Report contains the rather scary results of a survey of 70 professional hackers and penetration testers at DEFCON, the world’s largest hacking and security conference. The findings will overturn much accepted thinking about cyber security.
The difference about the Black Report is that it focusses on the hackers, rather than on the victims. “There is no shortage of cybersecurity industry reports so we’ve avoided going down the familiar path of compiling data about incidents that have already taken place.” said Chris Pogue, Nuix’s Chief Information Security Officer ,“Instead, we have focused on the source of the threat landscape: the attackers themselves.”
And what the hackers have to say is of considerable interest.
- Traditional countermeasures such as firewalls and antivirus almost never slow them down
- Endpoint security technologies are often effective at stopping attacks, as are Intrusion Prevention Systems
- 80% of hackers rated employee education as an important or extremely important countermeasure
- Only 9% say they are in it for the money (but, well, they would say that, wouldn’t they!)
- Hackers change their methods with each attack and with every target, limiting the effectiveness of defense based on previous experience
- Social engineering tactics is almost always used as part of an attack (84% of the time)
- Two thirds of attackers are almost never caught red handed
As well as describing what works and what doesn’t in the way of defence, the report provides insights into hackers’ motivations, their education levels, how long they spend bypassing security systems, the tools and methods they use, and their greatest challenges and frustrations. Essential reading for any proactive CISO!
Photo: © leolintang under licence from Thinkstock Photos