Cyberattacks up 100 percent in 2 years, report shows

Last year was one for the records in terms of cybercrime attacks, which have increased more than 100 percent in the past two years, according to ThreatMetrix Cybercrime Report 2017: A Year in Review.

Fraudsters are now leveraging sets of stolen identity data to gain long-term profits, as evidenced by a highly elevated attack rate on account creation. More than one in nine of all new accounts opened in 2017 were fraudulent, according to the report.

The good news is that record numbers of these attacks are thwarted by organizations investing in innovative, digital-first strategies to protect consumers, ThreatMetrix said.

Not surprisingly, trends in consumer behavior are driving increasingly sophisticated attack patterns. Examples of both were identified in the report:

  • The volume of mobile transactions grew nearly 83 percent as consumers embrace multidevice behavior, with mobile overtaking desktop-based transactions for the first time in 2017.
  • Account takeover attacks increased 170 percent, and now occur every 10 seconds.
  • 83 million fraudulent new accounts were attempted between 2015 and 2017.
  • Fraudulent payments increased 100 percent over the last two years, with fraudsters using a stolen credit card or hacking into the victim's bank account to transfer money.
  • Hackers are layering their efforts to make them harder to detect. For example, social engineering attacks convince consumers they've been defrauded, and persuade them to "secure their account," through steps that actually give fraudsters access.

"Analyzing transactions based on true digital identity is the most effective way to instantly differentiate between legitimate users and cybercriminals," said Vanita Pandey, vice president of product marketing and strategy at ThreatMetrix. "We leave traces of our identity everywhere, and by mapping the ever-changing associations between people, their devices, accounts, locations and addresses, across the businesses with which they interact, trusted behavior for an individual becomes apparent."

Get the ThreatMetrix report.

Companies: ThreatMetrix & Cybersource

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