Photo - Alan Yeow, Country Manager, FireEye Malaysia
According to virtual machine-based security firm FireEye's latest advanced persistent threat (APT) report, Malaysia is at no 10 in the Asia Pacific region and below the average of countries targetted by APTs.
FireEye Malaysia country manager Alan Yeow and FireEye Asia Pacific's vice president and chief technology officer Bryce Boland, who released the Advanced Threat report (ATR) in Kuala Lumpur recently, said that countries in the Asia Pacific region were 35 percent more likely to be targetted by APTs than the global average.
Yeow said the report which detailed malicious activities captured by the FireEye Security Platform throughout the first six months of 2014, gathered data from unique cyber and malware command and control (CnC) communications.
Malaysia was one of the top 10 countries exposed to advanced persistent threats in the region, with variants from the malware families DarkComet and Mirage being used in more than 50 percent of the attacks.
Photo - Bryce Boland, Vice President & Chief Technology Officer FireEye Asia Pacific
Top Countries With Advanced Persistent Threat (APT) Activity In Asia Pacific and Japan
1. South Korea
2. Hong Kong
Specific threat activity
FireEye Asia Pacific's Boland said the Asean cut of the report showed that:
- Within ASEAN, both Singapore and Thailand were below the regional average at 41 percent and 39 percent respectively, with other key countries like Indonesia and Malaysia seeing less exposure to advanced threats. However, this is still above the global average of 36 percent.
- Governments in Southeast Asia are a major target of a variety of APT malware.
- Mirage has been known to be used for specific purposes in Asia, often employing legitimate decoy documents that are related to regional events such as ASEAN summits, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summits, energy exploration, or military affairs.
- Malware in other APT attacks has been seen contacting C2 servers located in Germany, Canada, Singapore and Romania.
Graph: APT Exposure Global versus APJ Countries
He said the following verticals were the top five most targeted by APT attacks in 2013:
- Services / Consulting / VAR - 19.8 percent
- Government - 13.5 percent
- High-tech - 13 percent
- Entertainment / Media / Hospitality - 10.2 percent
- Telecom - 9.2 percent