Record surges in healthcare attacks, fileless malware, cryptocurrency mining

During Q4 2017, McAfee Labs saw on average eight new threat samples per second, and the increasing use of fileless malware attacks leveraging Microsoft PowerShell. The Q4 spike in Bitcoin value prompted cybercriminals to focus on cryptocurrency hijacking through a variety of methods, including malicious Android apps.

“The fourth quarter was defined by rapid cybercriminal adoption of newer tools and schemes – fileless malware, cryptocurrency mining, and steganography. Even tried-and-true tactics, such as ransomware campaigns, were leveraged beyond their usual means to create smoke and mirrors to distract defenders from actual attacks,” said Raj Samani, McAfee Fellow and Chief Scientist.

Although publicly disclosed security incidents targeting health care decreased by 78% in the fourth quarter of 2017, the sector experienced a dramatic 211% overall increase in incidents in 2017. Through their investigations, McAfee Advanced Threat Research analysts conclude many incidents were caused by organizational failure to comply with security best practices or address known vulnerabilities in medical software.

Read more about the findings of the McAfee Labs analysis on Help Net Security.


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