Posted on Mar 9, 2021
You may not have heard of Advanced Persistent Threats (APT) as often as phishing or malware attacks, but they pose an extremely high risk to organizations, especially to high-profile companies and governments.
Advanced Persistent Threats is the term used to describe a sophisticated and organized cyberattack often orchestrated by a group of skilled and well-resourced adversaries. These skilled threat actors are almost always nation-states and they intend to steal data and/or surveil systems over an extended period of time. The US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) states that an APT is:
“An adversary that possesses sophisticated levels of expertise and significant resources which allow it to create opportunities to achieve its objectives by using multiple attack vectors (e.g., cyber, physical, and deception). These objectives typically include establishing and extending footholds within the information technology infrastructure of the targeted organizations for purposes of exfiltrating information, undermining or impeding critical aspects of a mission, program, or organization; or positioning itself to carry out these objectives in the future. The advanced persistent threat:
APTs have distinguishing characteristics, such as:
Additionally, there are various phases of an APT attack, which may include reconnaissance and weaponization, delivery, and data exfiltration.
There is no single solution to protect organizations from these types of attacks. APTs are extremely complex and covert, which means organizations need to create a multi-layered defense. Some of the wide range of defense in depth strategies organizations should adopt are:
SecurityScorecard provides organizations with the necessary visibility into their cybersecurity posture and valuable context to remediate possible exploits. By understanding potential weaknesses across 10 different risk factor groups, organizations are enabled to remove issues that may be exploited by threat actors, making their job harder.
SecurityScorecard’s Investigation & Analysis team is committed to providing organizations with global, trusted, and relevant insights through various extensive analyses. Not only does this team of experienced threat researchers operate one of the largest sinkholes, but they also conduct various analyses to find exploits that are being used by malware. One of these extensive analyses has enabled SecurityScorecard to identify Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVEs) that may be potentially targeted by APTs. With this information, SecurityScorecard works with its users to ensure they have the proper information to address these threats.
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