Security Firm: Digital Attacks Against U.S. Rise in November

The number of digital attacks in the United States rose by 13 percent in November despite an 8 percent decline worldwide, according to a London-based security firm.

The firm, mi2g, counted 6,642 attacks in November against the United States, accounting for half of all the attacks worldwide that month. So far this year, according to mi2g's tracking, attacks against the United States exceeded the next four most targeted victims combined.

"The main reasons behind the escalating attacks on U.S. targets have been the rising penetration of 24/7 Internet connectivity within the American business, government and domestic environment coupled with criminal opportunism and some antagonism towards U.S. foreign policy," mi2g chairman and CEO D.K. Matai said in a statement released Monday.

Much of the worldwide decline in November was due to a 70 percent decline in attacks in the United Kingdom. The security firm credits efforts by the British Chambers of Commerce and the National Infrastructure Security Coordination Centre to warn businesses of all sizes of an escalating threat from hacker attacks in early November. In all, attacks against the United Kingdom fell from 2,253 in October to 679 in November, mi2g found.

The firm also looks at successful "overt digital attacks" against government systems, and Australia had the worst month there. In November, Australian government systems were successfully hit 32 times. The United States was next, with 25 successful attacks.

Mi2g nodded to the recent CERT data released in November showing that the highest percentage of major new vulnerabilities impact Linux and that new Windows vulnerabilities were on the decline by that yardstick. Nonetheless, mi2g found that the most attacked operating system in November remained Microsoft Windows at 67 percent or 9,945 of all attacks.

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.