Kaspersky Lab reported an increase in attacks on automation systems

MOSCOW, 20 Sep — PRIME. Attacks on automation systems using malicious documents in the first half of 2022 grew by 80%, and the proportion of computers on such systems on which ransomware was blocked increased by 10%, reaching a maximum since 2020, a study by Kaspersky Lab showed, which RIA Novosti has.

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“In terms of the share of computers in automated control systems (ACS) on which malware was blocked (software – ed.), in Russia and in the world as a whole, building automation systems are in the lead … Most often, malicious objects penetrate onto computers of ICS from the Internet. In the first six months of 2022, the share of various threats on ICS computers in Russia increased significantly: dangerous Internet resources, by 44%, spyware by 18%, malicious documents by 80%, and various miners,” the experts found out.

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Analysts note that the increase in the number of ransomware attacks in the spring on private and state-owned companies also affected industrial automation systems. According to the study, the proportion of ICS computers on which ransomware was blocked in the first half of 2022 increased “by more than 10% compared to the same period in 2021 and was the highest since 2020.”

“This is a serious threat in terms of not only financial damage, but also disruption of business processes,” the Laboratory stressed.

According to the head of Kaspersky Industrial Systems Emergency Response Team (ICS SERT) Yevgeny Goncharov, not all automated control systems are really isolated from the Internet, and this is the main reason why malware often penetrates technological networks.

“Corporate mail on computers in the industrial network opens the way for spyware distributed through phishing emails, often from one industrial enterprise to another in letters disguised as correspondence from victim organizations … It is important to use new-generation complex specialized security solutions, which, among other things, will ensure protection of the IT- and OT-segment within the framework of a unified information security system (information security – ed.),” Goncharov explained.

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