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FireEye cautions India against Chinese cyber attacks


Enterprise cyber security company FireEye has cautioned India against the impending cyber security threats which will come from Chinese hackers in 2018.

China-based advanced persistent threat (APT) groups, who have created cyber havoc internationally, will shift their focus in 2018 to countries like India and Hong Kong. The focus of such groups would be to target economies which are seen as threats to Beijing’s influence over global markets, according to the cyber security company.

Hacker groups backed by nation-states are called as APTs. The changing geopolitical situation in the Indo-Pacific region will give way to such threats.

“There can be unorganised ‘hacktivism’ attacks as political tensions rise in the region. The attack by APTs within and against the countries is expected to continue and possibly rise throughout the new year,” said the company in a statement.

According to FireEye, it observed an increase in non-Chinese and non-Russian APT groups in 2017 and expects to discover more in 2018.

“Recently we did a report on APT33, a threat group out of Iran. They’re primarily targeting the kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the United States, and Israel. Those nations tend to pop up on Iran’s radar when it comes to targeting. It’s game on for them,” Kevin Mandia, CEO, FireEye, said in a statement.

Ransomware is expected to rise in 2018, especially as administrators are slow to patch and update their systems.

Strategic web compromises and spear phishing are other popular techniques that will continue to be used in 2018. The cyber world is expected to see many more destructive worms and wipers.

“For Indian enterprises, one of the most important security questions is, do you know who is targeting you and how they operate? The threat landscape looks very different depending on the nature of your business, the data you hold, your relationships, and more,” Shrikant Shitole, Senior Director and Country Head for India at FireEye, told news agency IANS.

Meanwhile, as cryptocurrency continues to skyrocket in value and popularity, malware targeting anonymous currencies such as bitcoin will increase in 2018.

“Moving into 2018, we expect to see much more malware actively stealing cryptocurrency from weakly protected wallets, shimming password entry to wallets, stealing offline wallets for brute forcing or using credentials stolen from the same user,” the firm said.

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