Detected web threats against online users in Singapore surged to 4.6M in 2018: report

24-Apr-2019 Intellasia | Yahoo News Singapore | 6:38 AM Print This Post

The number of detected web threats against online users in Singapore more than tripled to 4.6 million last year, said Kaspersky Lab in a press release on Monday (22 April).

Such threats surged more than 260 per cent between 2017 and 2018, the cybersecurity company added.

The information was gathered via Kaspersky Security Network (KSN) participants in Singapore.

Despite the increase, Singapore has the lowest number of online attacks last year compared with its neighbours in Southeast Asia, said Kaspersky Lab Southeast Asia’s general manager Yeo Siang Tiong.

Singapore was the 157th most attacked country worldwide in terms of detected online infections in 2018, according to Kaspersky Lab.

More than eight out of 10 web threats were detected from home users over the past two years, while the rest were detected from business users.

Nonetheless, “as a tech-savvy, a well-connected nation, and a rapidly developing business hub in the region, users in Singapore can be considered as lucrative targets for cybercriminals”, Yeo cautioned.

Kaspersky Lab’s report also found that Singapore had the highest number of malicious hosting incidents across Southeast Asia last year, with over 29 million online threats caused by servers hosted in Singapore. This was close to a 254 per cent increase compared with 2017, it added.

The report comes after a series of high-profile data breaches in Singapore announced by the authorities in the past year. In March, the private information of more than 800,000 blood donors in Singapore was put online without authorisation by a Health Sciences Authority (HSA) vendor.

Less than two months earlier, the Ministry of Health (MOH) announced that American citizen Mikhy K Farrera Brochez had leaked confidential data belonging to 14,200 HIV-positive individuals and 2,400 others who were identified through contact tracing.

In July last year, the MOH announced that the health records of 1.5 million Singaporeans, including prime minister Lee Hsien Loong, were stolen in a suspected state-sponsored attack, the country’s biggest ever data breach.

Web threats include a range of malicious software programmes that are designed to infect victims’ computers, said Kaspersky Lab.

Unsuspecting victims can unintentionally download them or be tricked into downloading a legitimate-looking but infected programme to their computer or mobile device.

These threats have been used to steal money and confidential data as well as to serve as launch pads for bigger attacks against large companies worldwide, it added.

The company advised internet users to look out for misspelling or other irregularities in a link address, enter personal details such as a username or password over a secure connection, and avoid logging in to banks or similar services over public Wi-Fi, and use up-to-date anti-malware programmes.


Category: Singapore

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