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Bangkok Post – Thailand tops region for ransomware attacks | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #ransomware


Cybercriminals becoming increasingly sophisticated, warns cybersecurity firm Kaspersky

Participants take part in a cybersecurity seminar in Nonthaburi in May 2022. (Photo: Pornprom Satrabhaya)
Participants take part in a cybersecurity seminar in Nonthaburi in May 2022. (Photo: Pornprom Satrabhaya)

Thailand had the most ransomware attacks in Southeast Asia last year, according to the Russia-based cybersecurity company Kaspersky.

The number of local threats, defined as threats from external devices such as USB flash drives, in Thailand ranked third in the region in 2023.

“Thailand has become a major target for threat actors who are increasingly using different tactics to launch sophisticated attacks on businesses and organisations,” said Benjamas Chuthapiphat, territory manager for Thailand with Kaspersky.

Personal data leaks have made headlines as both commercial and governmental service platforms have been compromised, she said.

A sample of leaked data will be posted in dark-web marketplaces, with the criminals then attempting double or triple extortion for ransom.

Double extortion occurs when cybercriminals exfiltrate data before carrying out the encryption. By exfiltrating the data, the attackers can demand a ransom in exchange for not publicly releasing or selling the data or selling it. Triple extortion adds another layer of pressure on the victim, such as encrypting more of an organisation’s material and demanding money to decrypt it.

Other common threats include phishing and smishing scams to download and install malware on personal and corporate devices.

Phishing involves sending messages purporting to be from reputable sources in order to induce individuals to reveal personal information. Smishing scams involve contact from an unknown number, often claiming to be from a reputable business.

Businesses and organisations in Thailand have also been exposed to critical cyber-attacks, said Ms Benjamas.

Kaspersky said that in 2023 it detected 109,315 ransomware incidents in Thailand, the highest in the region. Indonesia was second with 97,226.

The country had the third largest number (4.7 million) of local threat incidents out of 42 million in the region, behind Vietnam at 17 million and Indonesia at 16.4 million.

Kaspersky also detected 10.2 million RDP (remote desktop protocol) attacks in Thailand out of 61 million in Southeast Asia, ranked third after Vietnam at 25.9 million and Indonesia at 11.7 million.

An RDP attack allows an attacker to gain remote access to the targeted host computer.

Meanwhile, Kaspersky’s business-to-business solutions blocked 25,227 financial phishing attempts in Thailand, ranked at the fifth highest out of total 455,708 attempts in Southeast Asia.

The Philippines faced most blocks at 163,279, followed by Malaysia (124,105), Indonesia (97,465), Vietnam (36,130) and Singapore (9,502), which was the lowest.

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