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The European Union’s cyber security Agency ENISA has issued its annual Threat Landscape 2013 report which examines the top cyber-threats of 2013, the predominant security adversaries, and the most important cyber-threat trends in the digital ecosystem.

The report found that end-users lack knowledge yet they need to be actively involved in security efforts, and that adoption of simple security measures by end-users would reduce the number of cyber incidents for fifty percent.

Negative trends identified in 2013 include:

  • Threat agents have increased the sophistication of their attacks and of their tools.
  • Clearly, cyber activities are not a matter of only a handful of nation states; indeed  multiple states have developed the capacity to infiltrate both governmental and private targets.
  • Cyber-threats go mobile: attack patterns and tools targeting PCs which were developed a few years ago have now migrated to the mobile ecosystem.
  • Two new digital battlefields have emerged: big data and the Internet of Things.

The positive developments in the cyber threat trends in 2013 include:

  • Some impressive law-enforcement successes ; police arrested the gang responsible for the Police Virus; the Silk Road operator as well as the developer and operator of Blackhole, the most popular exploit kit, were also arrested.
  • Both the quality and number of reports as well as the data regarding cyber-threats have increased
  • Vendors gained speed in patching their products in response to new vulnerabilities.

“This threat analysis presents indispensable information for the cyber security community regarding the top threats in cyber-space, the trends, and how adversaries are setting up their attacks by using these threats,” said ENISA Executive Director, Professor Udo Helmbrecht.

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