This was revealed by computer security company Symantec in the company’s recently released predictions for 2013.
Symantec predicted that organisations will be forced to further grapple with an expanding volume of information within an increasingly toxic and threatening landscape.
While this may be viewed as risky for organisations, it provides IT experts with an opportunity to reevaluate current approaches in order to increase their efficiency, in addition to making them more scalable and cheaper to run.
“We don’t foresee that attacks against these smaller businesses will not let up, we’ll see small and medium-scaled businesses (SMBs) fall victim to not only other cyber conflict, but also of their own lack of preparation,” Symantec said.
According to the internet security provider, 2013 will be characterised with a rise in the number of cyber conflicts between nations, compelling organisations and individuals to become integral playmakers in the cyber world.
“In 2013, we will see the cyber equivalent of saber rattling, where nation states, organisations, and even groups of individuals use cyber attacks to show their strength and send messages,” Symantec stated.
In addition, the company asked individuals and organisations to be on the look out for fake antivirus programmes, which it said are already fading as a criminal enterprise, and ransomware. It however noted that a fresh harsher model has emerged.
Describing how ransomware runs, Symantec said it starts by infecting a computer system after which it restricts access until the owner of the computer pays a ransom to the malware’s creator.
“It goes beyond attempting to fool its victims; it attempts to intimidate and bully them. In 2013, attackers will use more professional ransom screens, up the emotional stakes to motivate their victims, and use methods that make it harder to recover data once compromised,” Symantec said.