Developing Countries Show Malicious Hack Attack Growth


No one country or nation-state is immune from cybersecurity threats or other malicious hacker attacks. Some attacks may world-wide. The Mirai botnet attack last year knocked out major websites, such as Netflix Inc. and Inc., for most of the East Coast. Others are focused on a specific nation and may even be considered digital warfare. According to Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), recent Russia hacking allegations were an “act of war.”

Where are these hacks coming from: rogue nation-states, terrorist groups or the 400-pound hacker in his basement? 

According to a report from Broomfield, Colo.-based cybersecurity company Webroot Inc., many cyberattacks, such as those that leverage internet of things (IoT) devices, are increasingly being launched by developing countries and not from others that may have more expansive resources to do so. The cyberattacks range from e-mail phishing schemes, distributed denial of services attacks and other network disabling strikes. 

Webroot Chief Technology Officer Hal Lonas told Bloomberg BNA Feb. 21, that cyberattacks from countries like Russia, Ukraine, India and Vietnam have seen an increased number of malicious IP addresses detected by Webroot over the past year. Surprisingly, the U.S. still leads the pack by accounting for 22 percent of internet protocol addresses that launched a malicious attack.

Lonas said that increased cybersecurity and data privacy regulations throughout the developed countries, such as the European Union and the U.S., is causing “the bad guys to move to the easier places to launch cyberattacks.” Countries like Vietnam and Ukraine, which account for approximately 12 percent of the total malicious IP addresses, don’t have a robust data protection regime, he said. Many of the developing countries that have data protection regimes often don’t have effective enforcement procedures, he said. 

Developing countries are becoming “the happy hunting ground” for cybercriminals, Lonas said.

To keep up with the constantly evolving world of privacy and security sign up for the Bloomberg BNA Privacy and Security Update.