Philippines Ranked 32nd Among Countries Globally on Internet Security Threat Activities

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Symantec, a company that specializes on computer security, reported a significant shift in cybercriminals’ behavior in the latest volume of their Internet Security Threat Report (ISTR). The said report articulated that recent plots of cybercriminals were being plotted for months before pulling off huge heists for a guaranteed long-term effect.

“There has been a decline in Philippines’ cyber security threat profile, ranked 32nd globally last year. A key observation is while the level of sophistication continues to grow among attackers, what was surprising was their willingness to be a lot more patient – waiting to strike until the reward is bigger and better,” said senior country manager of Symantec Philippines, Luichi Robles.

Due to this new style of cybercriminals, the size and scope of breaches increased by 62 percent based on the reported number of data that has been compromised with 552 million personal information, including credit card numbers and bank account details, has been exposed last 2013 – putting both businesses and consumers in grave threat.

Technical consultant of Symatec Philippines, Christina Tee, shared, “The potential of huge paydays means large-scale attacks are here to stay. Do not expect cybercriminals to slow down but rather, they will be more innovative and efficient in their attacks, targeting Small and Medium Businesses with less than 500 employees, in particular the wholesale and manufacturing sectors in the Philippines.”

“Companies of all sizes need to re-examine, re-think and possibly re-architect their security posture,” Tee added.

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The increasing flow of data from smart devices, apps, and other online services is like an open invitation to hackers to fully take advantage of whatever information that businesses and consumers circulate online. Regardless of existing threats, this practice, like online application forms and paying of bills through the internet, will just continuously grow and become more popular in the coming years due to the rapid change in technology, which is inevitable. That is why Symantec recommended the some practices to avoid personal and account information be compromised.

For businesses, companies should focus more on the information, rather than the device or data center – so it will be easy to identify the best policies that would help protect it. Educating the employees should also be one of the company’s precaution in terms of protecting confidential data. And lastly, it is also the company’s duty strengthen network security, avoid any data loss, and securing encryption through strong authentication and defensive procedures.

On the other hand, consumers are also advised to protect their passwords at all cost by creating a strong, unique code for each site they visit. If possible, before making any transaction with any company through internet, they should make a background check for any irregularities the company has been into. And most important of all, consumers should also familiarized themselves with the policies of the retailers and online services first, before giving out any of their banking and personal information.

image from phys.org