UK businesses were subjected to 281,094 internet-borne cyber attacks each last year, according to analysis from Beaming, the business ISP. The volume of attacks on UK companies was nearly a quarter higher (23 percent) in 2018 than 2017, surging to over 1,500 attacks a day on average in the final two months of the year.
Beaming’s analysts identified more than 1.3 million unique IP addresses used by cybercriminals to launch cyber attacks on UK companies in 2018. Around one sixth (16 percent) of these IP addresses were located in China. Much of the cyber attack activity in November and December was traced to IP addresses in Brazil and Russia. Twelve percent and seven percent of the IP addresses used to target UK companies in 2018 were located in Brazil and Russia respectively.
The most commonly target for cybercriminals in 2018 were IoT applications such as building control systems and networked security cameras that could be controlled remotely over the internet, as well as network device administration tools that are often unsecured by default.
On average, businesses were subjected to 489 attacks a day targeting these systems in the final quarter of 2018. File sharing applications attracted 277 attacks a day and databases 120 attacks a day over the same period.
Sonia Blizzard, managing director of Beaming, comments: “As an ISP, we can see what is happening on the internet and take steps to help customers protect themselves and those they do business with. We’ve seen a huge surge in criminal activity online in the final months of 2018. UK businesses were attacked at least once every two minutes last year, making it the worst year on record for cyber attacks.”
“While there is plenty that we can do at a network level to minimise the threat of online attacks, businesses need to take cyber security seriously and put in place multiple layers of protection to ensure they don’t expose their people, assets, customers and businesses partners to undue risk.”
To access advice from The National Cyber Security Centre on how businesses can boost their online resilience, please visit https://www.ncsc.gov.uk/