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Microsoft Predicts Top Cyber Threats for 2014
Microsoft Predicts Top Cyber Threats for 2014

By Jennifer LeClaire
December 17, 2013 2:07PM

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There's very little to argue with here, but other than the World Cup, Microsoft's top security predictions for 2014 could easily be a list for 2013 or even 2015. Usually lists like Microsoft's 2014 top security predictions make me painfully aware of how little progress the security industry makes as time rolls on, said security expert Ken Pickering.
 



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We Will See an Increase in Cybercrime Activity Related to the World Cup

As with any large sporting event, Rains said cybercriminals will also be looking for illegal ways to make money and take advantage of the excitement surrounding the World Cup. Given ticket sales for the event started long ago, he’s sure attackers have already been trying to identify ways to swindle money. But he expects to see an uptick in current levels of spam and phishing attacks that use the World Cup context as bait.

“Advance-fee fraud is a common confidence trick in which the sender of a message purports to have a claim on a large sum of money or needs financial help because of some hardship,” he said. “The sender asks the prospective victim for a temporary loan to get access to their claim or to help them overcome the harsh circumstances in which they find themselves. Of course these 419 scams won’t be limited to Brazil as football/soccer is the world’s most popular sport. I expect to see attackers cast a broad net using different languages in order to ensnare as many victims as possible in Latin America and Europe, as well as other parts of the world.”

Rise of Regional Cloud Services

Jeff Jones, a director of Microsoft’s Trustworthy Computing, said in the wake of heightened concerns about unauthorized access to data, we will see the emergence and broad promotion of regional cloud service offerings.

“The increased sensitivity to both legal data access and intelligence monitoring will be seen as a market opportunity that will be actioned in two ways -- start-ups and existing providers,” he said. ‘Regional start-ups will see a new opportunity to compete against global providers, while existing providers will develop and offer services delivered from regionally-based data centers in an effort to allay concerns and provide increased customer choice. We also anticipate continued levels of interest in the efforts of technology company support of principles to reform government surveillance practices, such as those discussed here.”

Dev-Ops Security Integration Fast Becoming Critical

Mike Reavey, General Manager of Operational Security Assurance at Microsoft’s Trustworthy Computing, said as more and more organizations across the industry embrace secure development tools, like Microsoft’s Security Development Lifecycle, and operations teams mature their processes to become more security-centric with methodologies such as Operational Security Assurance for online services, attackers will be left trying to exploit the seams between development and operations. (continued...)

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