The Top 10 Security Stories of 2011 from Kaspersky Lab

30 Dec 2011
Business News

From Hacktivism to Mac Malware, 2011 has been a year full of IT security incidents. Kaspersky Lab’s experts have picked out the key trends of the past 12 months and highlighted the major new features on the security landscape. Looking at these stories gives us an idea of what we can expect in 2012.

According to Costin Raiu, Director of Kaspersky Lab's Global Research & Analysis Team, the most significant stories of the last year were:

  1. The Rise of ‘Hacktivism’ – one of the major trends of 2011, and no doubt it will continue into 2012.
  2. The HBGary Federal Hack – how weak passwords, old software systems plus use of the cloud created a security nightmare.
  3. The Advanced Persistent Threat – these attacks confirm the emergence of cyber-espionage as common practice among powerful state actors.
  4. The attacks against Comodo and DigiNotar – trust in certificate authorities (CA) is under threat. In the future CA compromises may become more widespread. Besides, it is likely that more digitally-signed malware will appear.
  5. Duqu and Stuxnet - state-of-the-art cyber warfare. Is this the start of a cyber Cold War?
  6. The Sony PlayStation Network Hack – the new perils hidden in the cloud. Personally Identifiable Information is conveniently available in one place, accessed over fast Internet links, ready to be stolen in case of any misconfigurations or security issues.
  7. Botnet Takedowns and the battle against Cybercrime – serving notice to the cyber gangs that their scams are no longer risk-free. But every battle shows up the vast limitations of today’s legal systems when it comes to a coordinated and effective approach to cybercrime.
  8. The Rise of Android Malware – several factors make Android vulnerable to cybercrime: rapid growth; freely available documentation about the platform; and weak screening at Google Market, making it easy to upload malicious programs.
  9. The CarrierIQ Incident – do you know exactly what is running on your mobile device? A single incident highlighted how little we know about who is in control of our hardware.
  10. Mac OS Malware – the crossover of PC threats (rogue AV programs are one of the most popular malware categories for PCs) to Macs was another important trend of 2011.

“I selected these stories because they point to the major actors of 2011 who will no doubt continue to play a major role in the cyber-security blockbuster which is just around the corner,” Costin Raiu says. “These are the hacktivist groups, the security companies, the advanced persistent threat in the form of superpowers fighting each other through cyber-espionage, the major software and gaming developers such as Adobe, Microsoft, Oracle and Sony, law enforcement agencies, traditional cybercriminals, Google - via the Android operating system, and Apple - thanks to its Mac OS X platform. And these same stars will be playing in all the major 2012 security blockbuster movies.”

The full version of the overview for 2011 is available at:

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