Attacks/Breaches

11/29/2018
06:20 PM
Connect Directly
Twitter
LinkedIn
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Overall Volume of Thanksgiving Weekend Malware Attacks Lower This Year

But ransomware attacks go through the roof, new threat data from SonicWall shows.

Somewhat unexpectedly, the overall volume of malware attacks leading up to and through this year's Thanksgiving holiday weekend was actually substantially lower than for the same days last year.

Security vendor SonicWall, which tracks threat data on a continuous basis, says its customers encountered a total of 91 million attacks overall in the days preceding Thanksgiving and those immediately after: Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday.

The number represented a 34% decrease, or a third fewer attacks, compared with the same period in 2017. The decline was especially sharp on Cyber Monday, which by all early accounts was record-breaking both in terms of the number of online shoppers and sales.

Compared with the 22.6 million attacks that SonicWall shoppers encountered on Cyber Monday 2017, this year the number of malware attacks was 47% lower, at just under 12 million.

Each of the other days starting from Black Friday through Cyber Monday recorded smaller but still significant declines in malware attack volume. Malware attacks on Black Friday — when online purchases topped a record-breaking $6 billion — were 40% lower than in 2017.

SonicWall says one reason could simply be that cybercrooks are becoming more focused in their attacks. Instead of hitting consumers with an overly broad range of malware, they are narrowing their focus to the most profitable types of attacks.

One data point to support this theory was the sharp increase in ransomware attacks overthe online holiday shopping days. SonicWall says it recorded over 889,900 ransomware attacks on customers in the period between Nov. 19 and Nov. 27, a 432% increase over the 167,380 it recorded in 2017. The increase was especially dramatic on Black Friday (about 4,100 in 2017 versus over 113,300 this year) and Small Business Saturday (10,170 versus 103,600).

Phishing and cryptojacking attacks also increased this year compared with a year ago, SonicWall says.

Significantly, despite the decline in malware attacks during the Thanksgiving shopping season, malware attacks for 2018 as a whole are substantially higher than in 2017. Through the end of October 2018, SonicWall says, the total number of malware attacks was 44% percent higher than 2017 at the same point.

Related Content:

 

Black Hat Europe returns to London Dec 3-6 2018  with hands-on technical Trainings, cutting-edge Briefings, Arsenal open-source tool demonstrations, top-tier security solutions and service providers in the Business Hall. Click for information on the conference and to register.

Jai Vijayan is a seasoned technology reporter with over 20 years of experience in IT trade journalism. He was most recently a Senior Editor at Computerworld, where he covered information security and data privacy issues for the publication. Over the course of his 20-year ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
'PowerSnitch' Hacks Androids via Power Banks
Kelly Jackson Higgins, Executive Editor at Dark Reading,  12/8/2018
The Case for a Human Security Officer
Ira Winkler, CISSP, President, Secure Mentem,  12/5/2018
Windows 10 Security Questions Prove Easy for Attackers to Exploit
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  12/5/2018
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win a Starbucks Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: This comment is waiting for review by our moderators.
Current Issue
10 Best Practices That Could Reshape Your IT Security Department
This Dark Reading Tech Digest, explores ten best practices that could reshape IT security departments.
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2018-8651
PUBLISHED: 2018-12-12
A cross site scripting vulnerability exists when Microsoft Dynamics NAV does not properly sanitize a specially crafted web request to an affected Dynamics NAV server, aka "Microsoft Dynamics NAV Cross Site Scripting Vulnerability." This affects Microsoft Dynamics NAV.
CVE-2018-8652
PUBLISHED: 2018-12-12
A Cross-site Scripting (XSS) vulnerability exists when Windows Azure Pack does not properly sanitize user-provided input, aka "Windows Azure Pack Cross Site Scripting Vulnerability." This affects Windows Azure Pack Rollup 13.1.
CVE-2018-8617
PUBLISHED: 2018-12-12
A remote code execution vulnerability exists in the way that the Chakra scripting engine handles objects in memory in Microsoft Edge, aka "Chakra Scripting Engine Memory Corruption Vulnerability." This affects Microsoft Edge, ChakraCore. This CVE ID is unique from CVE-2018-8583, CVE-2018-8...
CVE-2018-8618
PUBLISHED: 2018-12-12
A remote code execution vulnerability exists in the way that the Chakra scripting engine handles objects in memory in Microsoft Edge, aka "Chakra Scripting Engine Memory Corruption Vulnerability." This affects Microsoft Edge, ChakraCore. This CVE ID is unique from CVE-2018-8583, CVE-2018-8...
CVE-2018-8619
PUBLISHED: 2018-12-12
A remote code execution vulnerability exists when the Internet Explorer VBScript execution policy does not properly restrict VBScript under specific conditions, aka "Internet Explorer Remote Code Execution Vulnerability." This affects Internet Explorer 9, Internet Explorer 11, Internet Exp...