New Threat Report Finds Nearly 90% of Cyber Threats Involve Social Engineering

social-engineering-2Analysis of over 3.5 billion attacks provides insight into where threat actors are placing their efforts and where you should focus your cyber defenses.

It’s said you can predict the outcome of the presidential election with a small number of votes. That’s the power of statistics and a valid sample size.

So, when you have 3.5 billion cyber attacks as your sample data, it’s a very accurate reflection of the state of attacks.

This is the case in Avast’s recently-released Q1/2024 Threat Report. Here is an overview of what organizations should be most concerned about:


Source: Avast

Let’s pull out some of the pertinent data points:

  • Scams and phishing dominate all attacks involving malware 
  • Social engineering attacks dominated as 90% of mobile attacks and 87% of desktop attacks leveraged some form of social engineering (likely why we see the preponderance of scams and phishing in the chart above)

The data here alone speaks volumes. To summarize, most of the attacks your organization will face:

  • Reside either on the web or from within email
  • Contain social engineering elements to fool your users
  • Have the intent of either scamming your users or phishing them for credentials, remote access, the installation of malware or to commit digital fraud

The proper response here is to first shore up security controls around email and the web — finding solutions that proactively protect the organization from malicious content. Secondly, it’s time to leverage the individuals interacting with these social engineering attacks, arming them with security awareness training designed to reduce the risk of user engagement and increase the state of your organization’s cybersecurity readiness.

KnowBe4 empowers your workforce to make smarter security decisions every day. Over 65,000 organizations worldwide trust the KnowBe4 platform to strengthen their security culture and reduce human risk.

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