Maintain Awareness of Non Malware Threats

Posted on Apr 25, 2017

The evolution of cybersecurity threats is ongoing and complex. Maintaining cybersecurity awareness requires constant vigilance, as well as interagency communication at the highest levels. Some cyber threats are well known both publicly and privately; malware viruses attached to emails, ransomware hacks (with large healthcare institutions often as the target), and data vulnerabilities all file into this category. One threat which is less well-known, but is becoming a more widespread concern, is a non-malware based cyber attack. These can take many forms, but one of the best ways to thwart this type of attack is simply through awareness that can arise from good collaboration and solid policy.


Cybersecurity Awareness | Maintain Awareness of Non-Malware Threats</

What Is a Non-Malware Attack?

Non-malware based cyber threats can be defined as an attack which uses your computer's existing systems as opposed to something downloaded inadvertently by a user (such as an e-mail virus). By becoming a file-less virus, a non-malware cyber attack can be very difficult to recognize; while processing, the best ones create a presentation that mimics your organization's screens and systems to make it appear all is functioning normally. Once attackers have access to your operating systems, data and information will be at their disposal. Because they are often operating based on user's credentials, multiple layers of security that meet a malware virus head-on are not present.

What Might an Attack Look Like?

2017 may be a more common year for non-malware cyber-attacks, with the phrase itself becoming somewhat of a buzzword. Two common examples of non-malware attacks and the systems they might use are:

  • Malicious websites disguised as genuine ones, allowing the non-malware attack to work in the background unwittingly.
  • Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) is often targeted to gain more full access to the operating system as a whole.

One thing these cyber-attacks all have in common is how well they work. A big reason why they are so successful stems from the creative nature by which they are deployed on targets; users and organizations often do not have security procedures and software in place to stop something new like non-malware based attacks.

The sharing of information and the collaboration between companies and individuals with similar risks is an exceptionally useful tool against the growing trend of non-malware cyber-threats. By having situational awareness on a day-to-day basis, computer networks and data can be more secure from evolving threats. This level of cybersecurity awareness is best practiced with platforms like the NC4 Mission Center: a revolutionary system that allows peer groups to share and provide vital information in real-time. To learn more, contact NC4 today at 877-624-4999.

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