2016 IN REVIEW: Domain Cyber Security Report


February 8, 2017

Updated: Nov. 20, 2018

The cyber world is constantly evolving.

As we get better at defending our networks and data, the bad guys step up their game. Check out these stats on the state of cyber security for 2016. Cyber crime is the fastest growing economic crime in the world and it is affecting all industries from small businesses to large corporations.

  • Point-of-sale malware creation declined by 93% since 2014 after high profile retail breaches led to more proactive security measures across the industry. Your credit card information is more secure than it has been in recent years, not less.
  • Secure Sockets Layer/Transport Layer Security (SSL/TLS) encrypted traffic grew by 38%, partly in response to growing cloud application adoption. That means we are getting better at implementing online security measures to protect our data as it moves across the internet.
  • Ransomware use grew by 167x year-over-year from nearly 4 million attack attempts in 2015 to 638 million in 2016 and was the payload of choice for malicious email campaigns and exploit kits. Watch out for those emails! The best firewall is still the human firewall, a vigilant, well trained one.
  • Internet of Things devices were compromised on a massive scale due to poorly designed security features, opening the door for distributed denial-of-service attacks on major companies like Airbnb, Netflix, Reddit, Twitter and Spotify.

These businesses found out the cost of poor cyber security the hard way. Integris’s job is to make sure you learn from others’ mistakes to protect your business instead of putting it at risk.

  • Dominant exploit kits Angler, Nuclear and Neutrino disappeared in mid-2016, most likely due to the arrests of high-profile cyber attackers. Smaller exploit kits filled the void, but have never really recovered.
  • SSL/TLS encryption still provides an uninspected backdoor into the network that cyber criminals could exploit to sneak in malware. This type of threat has seen a 72% year over year growth. While most new firewalls have the capability to fully inspect all of the encrypted traffic, they do not have the horsepower to do it quickly, meaning many businesses do not turn it on, leaving a major gap in their security standing.
  • Android devices saw increased security protections but remain vulnerable to overlay attacks, ad-fraud malware, and other threats that could in the future infect entire corporate networks from a single infected device.
  • Unique malware samples collected fell to 60 million in 2016 compared with 64 million in 2015, a 6.25% decrease, whereas total attack attempts dropped to 7.87 billion in 2016 from 8.19 billion in 2015.

All of this information was summarized from Sonicwall’s Annual Threat Report which we have always found very helpful. For a full report on cyber crime, you can click here to download the 2017 SonicWall Annual Threat Report.

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