UK is the No. 1 target for Advanced Persistent Threat cyber attacks

A report published by leading security specialist Firefly has discovered that the UK is the number one target for Advanced Persistent Threats. Taking data from the first half of 2014 the report looked at the cyber threat landscape across Europe, the Middle East and Asia (EMEA). Firefly published its findings in its Regional Advanced Threat Report and found that the most targeted sectors were government departments, financial institutions and telecommunications.

What is an APT?

An APT is the description given to the coordinated cyber activities of sophisticated cyber criminals and state level entities. APTs target large corporations and foreign governments, with the objective of stealing information or compromising information systems. An APT is not usually deployed to bring down a business, but to stay embedded within its systems and extract information at a slow and undetected pace.

Richard Turner, Vice President of Firefly commented:

“Advanced attacks are the new reality for business and government. By preparing an effective defensive strategy, organisations can avoid the risk of sitting on the side lines as their data and intellectual property find their way to competitors, adversaries or hacktivists.”

So what does an effective defence strategy look like?

Well I’d make two suggestions:

Firstly conduct a penetration test right away to assess the current level of security on your networks and systems. Penetration testing is relatively inexpensive and provides a fast and efficient way of identifying any weaknesses in your security.

Secondly look at implementing an information security management system (ISMS). An ISMS is a structured way of continually managing data and ensuring that your cyber security stands up to the latest cyber security threats.
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What have we learnt from this post?

Well the UK economy may have returned to growth in recent months, however hidden threats lie everywhere: threats that you may not even be aware of.

As you’ll have seen from our blog, data breaches are now a daily occurrence and if you don’t assess your own networks and systems and implement an effective defence strategy, you may become the next victim.


IT Governance is a global leader in penetration testing and implementing the cyber security Standard ISO27001. Call us now on
 0845 070 1750 to see how we can help improve your cyber security.