Check Point® Software Technologies Ltd, the worldwide leader in securing the Internet, today issued its 2014 Security Report, the company’s second annual report uncovering the major threat trends that impacted organizations across the world.
For a full copy of this year’s Security Report, visit checkpoint.com/securityreport.
In a world of ever-changing cyber threats, organizations must understand the nature of the latest exploits, and how their networks are potentially impacted. Enterprises need to arm themselves with both cyber threat awareness and the appropriate security architecture to address these evolving challenges. The 2014 Security Report reveals the prevalence and growth of threats on enterprise networks, through information obtained over the course of 2013. This report is based on collaborative research and in-depth analysis of over 200,000 hours of monitored network traffic, from more than 9,000 Threat Prevention gateways, across organizations in 122 countries.
Key findings include:
Malware Activity Increased in Speed and Quantity
Overall malware activity grew dramatically year-over-year. Our research found malicious software within 84% of the organizations under analysis; this malware was downloaded at an average rate of one every ten minutes. In fact, 14% of organizations experienced a user downloading malware every two hours or less in 2012. This year, that number increased by over three-fold to 58% of organizations.
“Unknown” Malware Ruled the Threat-scape
Smarter, sophisticated, and more resilient malware emerged in 2013. Check Point’s Threat Emulation sensors revealed that 33% of organizations downloaded at least one infected file with unknown malware for the period between June and December 2013. Of those infected files, 35% were PDFs. New obfuscation tools called “crypters” enabled malware writers to bypass detection by anti-malware software.
The Bot Infestation
Bot infections continued in prevalence, with a host infected by a bot every 24 hours. In 2013, at least one bot was detected in 73% of our surveyed organizations, an increase from 63% in 2012. Organizations also struggled with containing bots. Check Point found that 77% of bots were active for more than four weeks. Bots also communicated with their Command and Control (C&C) every three minutes.
Risky Applications Resulted in Risky Business
Use of high-risk applications continued to be on the rise in 2013, with torrents, anonymizers, peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing applications being used every nine minutes on an average day. P2P file sharing usage increased from 61% of organizations in 2012 to 75% in 2013. Additionally, 56% of organizations ran anonymizer proxy applications in 2013, up from 43% in 2012.
Taking the “Confident” out of Confidential
Data loss was top-of-mind in 2013, with recent breaches and mass theft targeting consumer data at well-known brands like Target, Neiman Marcus and Michaels. Check Point research found that 88% of the organizations analyzed experienced at least one potential data loss event, growing from the 54% observed in 2012. In fact, in 33% of the financial institutions surveyed by Check Point, credit card information was sent outside of the organizations, while 25% of health care and insurance institutions researched sent HIPAA-protected information outside of their walls.
“Our 2014 Security Report provides a bird’s eye view into the degree of infiltration and sophistication of new threats. We found that organizations are often surprised by the severity of bot infections and the various threats that lurk on their networks,” said Amnon Bar-Lev, president of Check Point Software Technologies. “It is clear that customers need an architectural approach to deal with these issues. Customers can rely on our revolutionary security architecture Software-defined Protection (SDP) to prevent the spread of attacks, and protect in real-time against new and existing threats.”
Check Point offers unparalleled network protection through industry-leading security solutions for organizations of all sizes, providing best-in-class software and hardware against all the types of threats identified in this year’s Security Report. By consolidating security into a single, integrated solution, organizations have the flexibility to customize their security infrastructure based on the protection and performance needed in their environments. Check Point security appliances start with the 600 appliances, offering big security to small businesses, up to the 61000 appliance model, the industry’s fastest security system. Users are able to choose from a wide variety of advanced security capabilities as part of Check Point’s award-winning Software Blade Architecture™, with four pre-defined security packages including Next Generation Firewall, Next Generation Threat Prevention, Next Generation Data Protection and Next Generation Secure-Web Gateway.
As part of Check Point’s industry leadership, our experts regularly conduct Security Workshops, to analyze and review a customer’s security architecture as well as the usage of their security solutions. Through these workshops, Check Point can offer valuable strategies for deployment of effective security architectures and mitigation of threats. Security Workshops are preceded by a Security Checkup, where a customers’ traffic is monitored for several days. For more information on conducting a Security Checkup to discover your organizations’ exposure to security threats, visit: checkpoint.com/campaigns/securitycheckup/index.html.
About the Report
The Check Point 2014 Security Report provides insight into the major security events that occurred in organizations across the world and offers recommendations on how to protect against them. The report is based on collaborative research from Check Point Security Checkup assessments, Check Point Threat Emulation sensors, Check Point ThreatCloud™, and Check Point Endpoint Security reports, and includes in-depth analysis of 200,000+ hours of monitored network traffic from over 9,000 security gateways across 996 organizations of various industries worldwide.
About Check Point Software Technologies Ltd
Check Point Software Technologies Ltd (checkpoint.com), the worldwide leader in securing the Internet, provides customers with uncompromised protection against all types of threats, reduces security complexity and lowers total cost of ownership. Check Point first pioneered the industry with FireWall-1 and its patented stateful inspection technology. Today, Check Point continues to develop new innovations based on the Software Blade Architecture, providing customers with flexible and simple solutions that can be fully customized to meet the exact security needs of any organization. Check Point is the only vendor to go beyond technology and define security as a business process. Check Point 3D Security uniquely combines policy, people and enforcement for greater protection of information assets and helps organizations implement a blueprint for security that aligns with business needs. Customers include tens of thousands of organizations of all sizes, including all Fortune and Global 100 companies. Check Point's award-winning ZoneAlarm solutions protect millions of consumers from hackers, spyware and identity theft.