Less developed countries, especially in Africa, seem to be more vulnerable to cyber-attacks due to inferior security systems in place and weak infrastructure – a fact that has been corroborated by Check Point Software’s latest ThreatCloud World Cyber Threat Map.
According to the company’s Threat Map, Tanzania was the most attacked country in the world in October in terms of cybercrime.
“Many African countries have well-developed mobile Internet networks that make it affordable for people to be online all the time. Hackers often target less developed countries, which may be behind the likes of South Africa and Kenya in terms of IT security, to gain backdoor access into larger countries or organisations,” explained Doros Hadjizenonos, Country Manager of Check Point South Africa.
Six other African countries made it onto the Top 20 list of most attacked nations in the world for October, a list that Africa doesn’t particularly want to be on. Malawi came in fourth, Namibia fifth, Mauritius seventh, Tunisia eighth, Ethiopia ninth and Nigeria twentieth.
South Africa and Kenya, while not in the Top 20 list, also ranked among the most affected countries, with Kenya in position 52 and South Africa in 67th place.
A launching point
The lack of IT security in less developed countries gives hackers a bit of a launching point from which infiltrate countries like South Africa and Kenya.
“A large bank in South Africa could have a small branch in Tanzania. Hackers could exploit weaker security controls in Tanzania to gain entry into the bank’s larger network. This is why third-party links should be subject to even more stringent security controls,” Hadjizenonos said.
According to Check Point Software, the three most common malware types focus on remote control of infected PCs, with the top three malware families accounting for nearly 40% of the total recognised attacks in October.
Mobile malware is also on the rise, as the company has seen an increase of 20-35% per month in the amount of attacks.
“Threats targeting mobile devices are growing rapidly, but many organisations are not applying adequate security measures to protect them or their users, putting sensitive corporate data at risk. Companies need to be aware of these risks and apply security to stop mobile malware.”
If you want to see who is attacking who and with which software in real-time, check out the really cool World Cyber Threat Map.