Skip to main content

Cyberthreats are getting more intense

(Image credit: Image source: Shutterstock/igor.stevanovic)

In the past year, cybercriminals have become a lot more sophisticated, a new report from Microsoft shows.

The Redmond software giant claims criminals have started to use techniques that make them far harder to spot, making them a serious threat to “even the savviest targets”.

This assessment includes all manner of cybercrime groups, from nation-state actors, whose new recon techniques increase the chances of compromising high-value targets, to groups targeting businesses, who have moved their infrastructure to the cloud in order to better conceal their activities.

Attackers have also developed new ways to scour the internet for systems vulnerable to ransomware (opens in new tab), according to Microsoft.

Overall, techniques including credential harvesting, ransomware and IoT targeting have become a lot more popular in the past year.

“It is more important than ever that we take steps to establish new rules of the road for cyberspace," wrote Tom Burt, Corporate VP of Customer Security and Trust at Microsoft.

People should “focus on the basics”, Burt claims, which include “regular application of security updates (opens in new tab), comprehensive backup policies and, especially, enabling multi-factor authentication (MFA).”

According to Burt, Microsoft’s data shows that enabling MFA alone could have prevented the majority of successful attacks.

Sead Fadilpašić
Sead Fadilpašić

Sead Fadilpašić is a freelance tech writer and journalist with more than 17 years experience writing technology-focussed news, blogs, whitepapers, reviews, and ebooks. And his work has featured in online media outlets from all over the world, including Al Jazeera Balkans (where he was a Multimedia Journalist), Crypto News, TechRadar Pro, and IT Pro Portal, where he has written news and features for over five years. Sead's experience also includes writing for inbound marketing, where he creates technology-based content for clients from London to Singapore. Sead is a HubSpot-certified content creator.