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Cyber attacks can have lengthy recovery period

by Brian Sims

Advanced cyber attacks being made by state-sponsored cyber terrorists can take months to control, even after being detected. Following the Annual Report 2012-2013 from the Intelligence and Security Committee, which indicated that cyber espionage had resulted in Ministry of Defence data being stolen, Alex Fidgen of MWR InfoSecurity stated, ‘Attacks targeting Government departments or industry suppliers can remain undetected and active for up to a year, so the problem becomes endemic. Furthermore, it can take months to control these attacks meaning that, during this time, huge amounts of information can be downloaded by the attacking party.’ The report focused on UK Government departments being targeted, but it has been claimed that the same scenario occurs daily amongst commercial organisations. Many businesses can lack the understanding or the capacity to deal with sophisticated attacks. Many businesses are simply not prepared to protect themselves against the complexity of attacks that now commonly occur. As more organisations are targeted, so fragmented information from numerous sources is being pieced together to provide a complete data set for attackers.

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