Cyber-crime expected to surge this year
Threats to Android-based, cloud and other digital lifestyle devices will make battling cyber-criminals more complex, a recent report released by global cloud security leader Trend Micro Inc said.
Raimund Genes, chief technology officer of Trend Micro, said that in 2013, people are going to have a more difficult time managing the security of their devices due to different platforms, operating systems and security model. The Trend report, "Security Threats to Business, the Digital Lifestyle and the Cloud", outlines the 10 top threats facing businesses and consumers next year.
The most serious threat during 2013 may be malicious and high-risk Android apps, which Trend predicts will hit the 1-million mark this year, up from 350,000 at the end of 2012.
While traditional PC malware may recede a bit, threats to devices running the Android operating system will more than replace it.
The emergence of more digital lifestyle devices means that threats could appear in new and unexpected places, such as television sets and home appliances. Africa seems to be the next safe harbour for cyber-criminals on the run.
Slow adoption of Windows 8 by businesses means consumers will be the leading beneficiaries from its security enhancements during the coming year. Cyber-criminals are expected to target legitimate cloud services and data breaches will remain a serious threat in 2013, in part because existing security tools do not protect cloud data as well as traditional storage.
Meanwhile, consumers will increasingly use multiple-computing platforms and devices, making securing them a tough challenge. Politically motivated attacks will also become more destructive during 2013. Conventional malware threats will evolve gradually, with few, if any, significant new attacks. Still, attacks that do occur will become more sophisticated and harder to detect.
"Efforts to address global cyber-crime are gaining traction, but will take two or three more years to reach full implementation. The good news is that the timing is perfect for security defenders to set new standards and deliver new solutions that will have a disturbing impact on the underground economy," said Genes.
If that happens, 2013 may be remembered as a decisive turning point in the war on cyber-crime.