Many people think they’re safe from cyberattacks because criminal masterminds have high-value targets on their radars. Reality paints a different picture.
Cybercriminals don’t discriminate – they target enterprises, small businesses, and individuals. They constantly reinvent their techniques, even for low-level attacks, because people increasingly become aware of worn-out scams.
While that doesn’t mean their old tricks don’t work anymore, more creative scams and hacks are taking center stage. Here are the most dangerous cybersecurity threats to expect in 2023.
Cybercrime as a service (CaaS)
Cybercrime as a service is a criminal business model expert cybercriminals use to sell tools and services to novices in the field. It includes black hat hackers, malware and ransomware developers, and other criminals looking to access internet-enabled devices and networks with malicious intent.
Besides offering stolen credentials, they develop sophisticated malware anyone can use to carry out cyberattacks, even if they’re not tech-savvy. The dark web is full of these end-to-end services, which customers pay for in crypto. One of the common CaaS is the ransomware-as-a-service, which means anyone can purchase a ransomware virus.
Multi-vector cyberattacks leverage multiple entry points to infiltrate networks. They’re DDoS (Distributed Denial-of-Service) attacks on steroids.
They use multiple threat vectors instead of the traditional one, making fighting all of them impossible. Once you’ve dealt with one, they launch another.
Multiple threat vectors enable cybercriminals to orchestrate double and triple extortion attacks when launching ransomware. They can threaten with data leaks instead of only encrypting and exfiltrating sensitive information.
Combining this threat with CaaS makes both even more terrifying.
Social engineering attacks keep increasing, with cybercriminals developing more ingenious tricks to deceive people using psychological manipulation.
They leverage emotions to entice their victims to spend money on fake websites or divulge sensitive information. They create a sense of urgency, instill fear, or boost their unsuspecting victims’ excitement about investing in a sham.
This human hacking can take many shapes, including spear phishing, honeytraps, pretexting, tailgating, baiting, and scareware.
Pig butchering scams
Pig butchering scams lure victims into investing in a sham crypto project with the false promise of high earnings before cheating them out of their money.
Scammers using these baiting schemes contact their targets via text messages, IM apps, social media, and dating apps, pretending to know them. They use social engineering to build trust for weeks or months, discussing various topics before casually bringing up crypto investments and sharing links to their sham sites.
Once someone takes the bait, scammers ensure they win big to encourage more investments. After a while, they steal all the money, hence the “pig butchering” term for fattening a pig before slaughter.
BEC (Business Email Compromise) attacks
BEC attacks are spear phishing attacks. They include cybercriminals impersonating someone their targets know to gain personal or sensitive information, such as usernames and passwords. However, they focus on spoofing instead of sending malicious links in emails to steal data or get sizable payouts.
They introduce themselves as someone from their targets’ workplaces, tricking them into transferring money urgently to their accounts. They typically pose as mid-level employees and often use payroll diversion scams to cheat victims out of their money.
IoT devices as hacking targets
IoT (Internet of Things) devices have been prominent hacking targets for years. However, we’ll unquestionably see more attacks in 2023 because experts predict there will be 43 billion IoT devices this year.
The more connected devices we use, from smart watches, speakers, and locks to security cameras and autonomous cars, the more we simplify hackers’ malicious campaigns.
How can we deal with this problem? We won’t give up the convenience of real-time connectivity across devices. However, we can’t rely on their security protocols because history has taught us, they’re not unbreachable.
How can we protect our IoT devices, identities, and sensitive information? Here are several invaluable tips.
How can you protect against these cybersecurity threats?
The most valuable tip for protecting against cybersecurity threats is to trust no one online. Triple-check email addresses and domains, and don’t click on suspicious links – someone could deceive you through impersonation and other social engineering scams. Thus, only reveal people to official representatives, and do not forget secure file-sharing options.
However, you can’t live in fear. You can’t constantly dread that someone will pose as your friend, colleague, or family member to cheat you out of your money. You can’t forgo your devices and start living like a hermit. You can strengthen and regularly change your passwords, but you still need other solutions.
Enter VPNs (Virtual Private Networks). A VPN will encrypt your internet connection and create a private tunnel around the public network to make you invisible to potential hackers. No matter how many devices you connect to the internet, it will protect their systems and your data. So, you can get a VPN for PC that will also work on smartphones and TVs simultaneously.
Cybersecurity threats will continue increasing in 2023 and beyond. Cybercriminals will keep innovating their tactics and tools to launch sophisticated campaigns.
However, we’re no longer in the dark about their tricks. It’s easier than ever to fend them off and keep our data and identities safe, so don’t stop here. Dig deeper into other threats to become a savvy cybercitizen, forever vigilant about potential attacks.
Filed Under: Technology News
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