Trend Micro warns 2016 would be year of online extortion

Trend Micro

Cyber criminals will devise new ways to personalize attacks, making 2016 the year of online extortion, Trend Micro warned in its annual security predictions report released Tuesday.

The security software maker explained that online extortion will be accelerated through the use of psychological analysis and social engineering of prospective victims. Hacktivists will be driven to expose even more incriminating information, impacting targets, and facilitating secondary infections.

Trend Micro CTO Raimund Genes said 2016 to be a very significant year for both sides of the cybercrime equation.

He explained that governments and enterprises will begin to see the benefit of cybersecurity foresight, with changes in legislation and the increasing addition of cybersecurity officers within enterprises.

At the same time, as users become more aware of online threats, attackers will react by developing sophisticated, personalized schemes to target individuals and corporations alike.

“Hackers consistently evolve to adapt to their surroundings, just as online ads are declining, we see ransomware is increasing,” said Tom Kellermann, chief cybersecurity officer, Trend Micro.

“Despite the growth in security investments and legislation, these changes will inevitably bring new, more sophisticated attack vectors.”

Further, the report showed that mobile malware will grow to 20 million in 2016, primarily effecting China, while targeting new mobile payment options globally.

As more consumer-grade smart devices are used in day-to-day activities, at least one device failure will be lethal in 2016. Moreover, hacktivists will escalate attack methods to systematically destroy targets with high-profile data breaches.

Trend Micro noted that less than 50 percent of organizations are expected to have cybersecurity experts on staff by the end of 2016.

Increased ad-blocking products and services will force cybercriminals to find new means to target victims, resulting in fewer malvertisements.

As a result, legislation will expand to a global cybersecurity defense model, allowing for more successful arrests, prosecution and convictions.

Trend Micro International on Friday signed a definitive agreement to acquire HP TippingPoint, a provider of next-generation intrusion prevention systems (NGIPS) and related network security solutions for $300 million.

The acquisition will position Trend Micro as the go-to enterprise security provider of dynamic threat defence solutions spanning endpoints, network, data centre and the cloud, the company said in a release.

Arya MM

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