Hackers are using advanced techniques to infect over 250 workstations with malware every day, according to security firm FireEye.
FireEye European director of systems engineering Yogi Chandiramani reported a spike in advanced threat levels in a blog post, revealing that the company detected 90 advanced persistent threat (APT) families in 2013.
"Motivated by financial and political objectives, threat actors have increased their levels of sophistication to steal personal data and put organisations into non-compliance with user privacy EU directive (2002/58/EC)," read the blog post.
He added that the sophisticated nature of the attacks has led to a two-fold increase in infection levels within Europe over the past year.
"We saw that the rate of increase in workstation infections skyrocketed in the last four months of 2013. A clear sign of how rapidly threat actors targeting European organisations are evolving, the number of unique infections more than doubled from January to December 2013."
FireEye reported detecting 17,995 APT malware infections during 2013, in February. Great Britain was listed as accounting for 28 percent of all European infections, making it the worst-hit APT victim in the region. Below it Switzerland was the second-worst hit, accounting for 21 percent of all APT infections during the period.
Financial services and healthcare were listed as the two most targeted industries, and were the victims of 17 percent and 21 percent of all APT attacks respectively.
Data theft is a growing problem facing businesses. Research from PwC and the UK Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) found each successful data breach is costing UK businesses as much as £1.15m.
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