Fortinet's FortiGuard Labs Reveals Top 10 Threat Predictions for 2014

Fortinet's FortiGuard Labs Reveals Top 10 Threat Predictions for 2014 
Expected Trends Include Android Malware Migrating to Industrial
Control Systems, Cybercriminals Battling It Out in the Deep Web and
New Exploits Targeting Home Devices 
SUNNYVALE, CA -- (Marketwired) -- 11/25/13 --  Fortinet(R) (NASDAQ:
FTNT) -- a global leader in high-performance network security --
today revealed FortiGuard Labs' 2014 threat predictions, highlighting
10 threats to watch out for next year.  
Top 10 Threat Predictions for 2014 
1. Android Malware Expands to Industrial Control Systems and Internet
of Things
 As sales of mobile phones likely plateau in the coming
years, Android developers are being tasked to find untapped markets
for the Google operating system. A few of these emerging markets
include tablets, portable game consoles, wearable devices, home
automation equipment and industrial control systems (ICS/SCADA). Next
year, we predict we'll see the first instances of malware on these
new device types, specifically around embedded ICS/SCADA systems.
While we don't believe we'll see a "mobile-Stuxnet" in 2014, we think
cybercriminals will be attracted to platforms that go beyond common
SMS fraud. This includes new home automation devices that have
control over our electrical consumption, the temperature of our
fridges, etc. and feature software with remote login control panels
to show/confirm who may be at home at a given time. This is bound to
give cybercriminals new and nefarious ideas around how and when to
rob someone's home.  
2. Encryption Won't Change, but Use of Encryption Will Increase 
Despite the hype around super computers or quantum computers,
encryption algorithms and cryptography is unlikely to change next
year. However, while the general population will fail to use any form
of encryption in their daily lives, we predict for 2014 an uptick in
use of encryption based on fears that critical data and intellectual
property could be easily compromised or stolen through
strategically-placed malware or governmental eavesdropping programs
such as PRISM or XKeyScore.  
3. FBI in Conjunction with Global Cyber Security Agencies to Shut
Down Botnet Operators 
 This year we saw the FBI take down Silk Road
and, in conjunction with the NSA, basically declare war on the Tor
dark net. The FBI in partnership with other global cyber security
agencies have been felt from Dublin, when earlier this year when the
agency cracked the world's largest facilitator of child pornography
to Denmark, where they may have helped the Dutch crack a banking
malware gang that swindled $1.4 million from unsuspecting consumers.
Next year, we predict the FBI along with agencies such as the Dutch
National High Tech Crime Unit, national CERTs such as KISA, along
with frameworks such as FIRST and ITU-IMPACT will continue to wield
their influence on a global scale. We expect to see these agencies
broaden their scope beyond the dark net to go after a broader set of
global cyber targets, such as botnet operators and individuals
selling cybercrime services.  
4. The Battle for the Deep Web 
 While the FBI will broaden its scope
of targets in the coming year, we believe the agency will also
continue to make inroads into the Tor dark net and questionable file
sharing services such as Mega Upload. Knowing the cat and mouse games
black and white hats have been playing since the dawn of the first
computer viruses, we predict the increased scrutiny of these
"anonymous" services will lead to new and, dare we say, improved
versions that will be even harder to infiltrate, compromise and/or
take down. We've already seen the MegaUpload takedown birth Mega, a
fundamentally more robust platform. Expect to see similar renewed
development vigor around Silk Road in the coming year.  
5. New Exploits Target Off-Net Devices to Penetrate Corporate
 The increased maturity of desktop exploit and advanced
mitigation tools in the enterprise, such as malware sandboxing and
next-generation antivirus, makes penetrating corporate networks a
substantive challenge. The increased difficulty hackers are having
penetrating today's enterprise firewalls, will force them to take
more creative approaches into networks or devices that are
traditionally not hardened compared to the corporate network. These
soft targets can include home routers, smart televisions, home
automation and/or set top box connections. Taking a page from the
NSA, an agency that generally targets infrastructure over desktops,
we predict we'll see the first generic exploitation frameworks and
mass malware agents for these types of home devices later next year. 
6. Network Security Vendors Forced to Become More Transparent 
September, the Federal Trade Commission severely penalized a company
that marketed video monitoring technology to consumers for suggesting
in its literature that their product was "secure" when evidence
clearly showed it was not. This was the agency's first action against
a marketer of an everyday product with interconnectivity to the
Internet and other mobile devices, and the company was required to
make a number of conciliatory measures. Next year, we predict we'll
see this level of increased scrutiny and accountability at the
network security vendor level. Customers are no longer going to
accept the "proprietary security-hardened OS" marketing spin. They
will demand proof, and when they are subject to undue risk, they will
demand accountability. This will be in the form of greater
transparency around supply chain management, patch management and
Secure Development Lifecycle (SDL) practices. 
7. More Botnets Will Migrate From Traditional Command and Control
(CnC) Servers to Peer-to-Peer (P2P) Networks 
 Traditional botnets
use client-server (CS) mode to communicate with a CnC server. When a
server is detected and taken down, the whole network collapses,
making it difficult for bot herders to re-ignite compromised
machines. P2P mode takes the servers out of the equation. Each PC in
a P2P network could play a server or client role, thus making the
botnet harder to dismantle. Major botnets that have migrated to this
new model include ZeroAccess, Kelihos, Bublik and Zeus v3. Next year
we predict that number to rise significantly.  
8. More Botnets Will Cross Breed with Other Botnets 
botnets worked alone. In rare instances, when a botnet such as TDSL
infected a computer, the first thing it did was to look for traces of
other botnets running on the same PC and remove them, thus preventing
the compromised computer from becoming too unstable. In time, botnet
creators became better at hiding their malware on machines, which
made competing botnet detection and removal increasingly more
difficult. Rather than compete against other botnets, the trend we're
seeing is botnets actually joining forces with other botnets in order
to better grow their bases of infected users. We saw the first
instance of this back in 2009 with Virut. This year we're seeing an
uptick in this type of activity, with the Andromeda, Bublik, Dorkbot,
Fareit, and ZeroAccess botnets doing just that. Next year, we predict
we'll see even more botnets sharing their infected user base for
cross infection purposes.  
9. Increase in attacks targeting Windows XP 
 Microsoft will end
support for Windows XP on April 8, 2014. This means that newly
discovered vulnerabilities will not be patched, leaving systems
around the world vulnerable to attacks. According to NetMarketShare,
as of September 2013, Windows XP is still used on 31.42% of PCs in
the world. According to Gartner, by the time April 8 rolls around, it
is estimated that more than 15% of mid- to large-sized enterprises
will still have Windows XP running on at least 10 percent of their
PCs. Next year, we predict hackers, already in possession of zero day
exploits, will wait until the 8th in order to sell them to the
highest bidder. Because of their expected high price tag, these zero
days will likely be used to launch targeted attacks against
high-value businesses and individuals rather than deployed by common
cybercriminals in order to propagate mass infections.  
10. Biometrics for authentication will increase 
 This year Apple
made a bold move when it announced its new iPhone 5s would integrate
fingerprint authentication into the device. Never mind that it was
hacked a few days after the phone shipped. It got people talking
about the importance two-factor authentication in a world where the
single factor password login is growing increasingly archaic. As a
result of this renewed interest, we predict next year we'll see
additional mobile companies including a second factor of
authentication into their devices. We'll also see an increase in
additional forms of authentication, such as tattoos and pills, iris
scanning and facial recognition.  
About FortiGuard Labs
 FortiGuard Labs compiled threat statistics and
trends for this threat period based on data collected from
FortiGate(R) network security appliances and intelligence systems in
production worldwide. Customers who use Fortinet's FortiGuard
Services should be protected against the vulnerabilities outlined in
this report as long as the appropriate configuration parameters are
in place. 
FortiGuard Services offer broad security solutions including
antivirus, intrusion prevention, Web content filtering and anti-spam
capabilities. These services help protect against threats on both
application and network layers. FortiGuard Services are updated by
FortiGuard Labs, which enables Fortinet to deliver a combination of
multi-layered security intelligence and zero-day protection from new
and emerging threats. For customers with a subscription to
FortiGuard, these updates are delivered to all FortiGate,
FortiMail(TM) and FortiClient(TM) products. 
Last year's threat predictions can be found here. Ongoing research
can be found in the FortiGuard Center or via FortiGuard Labs' RSS
feed. Additional discussion on security technologies and threat
analysis can be found at the FortiGuard Blog. 
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 Fortinet (NASDAQ: FTNT) helps protect networks, users
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high-performance network security, we enable businesses and
governments to consolidate and integrate stand-alone technologies
without suffering performance penalties. Unlike costly, inflexible
and low-performance alternatives, Fortinet solutions empower
customers to embrace new technologies and business opportunities
while protecting essential systems and content. Learn more at 
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