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McAfee CTO warns hacker attacks growing in sophistication

22 Jan 2013
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McAfee has pledged to create a better connected security service for businesses to help counter the threats posed by attacks like Flame and Shamoon.

McAfee global chief technology officer, Michael Fey, told V3 the influx of new sophisticated attacks proves businesses must change their approach to security.

"What we've started to see facing businesses now is an escalation of attacks. In the past we would see a lot of attacks yield essentially no data loss, the ratio to attack and data breach was weighted towards enterprises," Fey told V3.

"What we're recognising now is the attackers are getting much better briefings and much better test environments. Now when they do attack and when they do get access the likelihood it'll be a significant breach."

Fey highlighted Shamoon's data wiping abilities as being a particularly dangerous development in hackers' attack patterns.

Shamoon is a malware that was discovered operating midway through 2012, which would wipe and forcibly reboot the machine it had infected once it had finished stealing data.

"We're starting to see evidence that they're cleaning up after themselves," said Fey.

"This means you have to question a Shamoon-type attack at the last stage or the first. I would argue that they're often the final stage of an attack. It's like in a gangster movie when they burn down the building to hide the evidence."

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Alastair Stevenson

Alastair has worked as a reporter covering security and mobile issues at V3 since March 2012. Before entering the field of journalism Alastair had worked in numerous industries as both a freelance copy writer and artist.

View Alastair's Google+ profile

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