February 13, 2023
CUJO AI Labs have just released a new cybersecurity report. Download it now!
CUJO AI Sentry stopped 2,102,990,310 threats between May 1 and November 1, 2022, or around 8,000 threats every minute. We’ve dug deeper into this data to see what it could tell us about home network security.
Home Networks Need Cybersecurity
This section was written by the Senior Security Lab Manager at CUJO AI, Leonardas Marozas.
Our data shows that over 67% of home networks experience at least a single online threat every month. Social engineering, fraud and phishing websites are a major threat to consumers, with 56% of end-users attempting to access them at least once every month. In total, 66,801,679 phishing attempts were prevented by CUJO AI Sentry in October, 2022.
We are seeing three major trends in home network security, and while they target different attack surfaces (types of devices, vulnerabilities, and behaviors), they are not isolated. For instance, the growth of vulnerable IoT devices feeds into the prevalence of botnets and DDoS attacks. As the cybersecurity landscape continues to evolve, we clearly see the need and value of our comprehensive, multi-layered security solution to protect tens of millions of households.
The spread of adware is growing, and we have seen extremely large spikes in activity over the past year. Most adware operates like a business – when an owner of an adware network receives an order, devices infected with potentially unwanted programs start getting ad pop-ups. Major spikes in adware activity (up to 400%) usually happen on weekends, when people spend more time online. It may also be the case that ads shown at those times are more effective.
Outdated IoT Devices
The number of end-of-life, unsupported or outdated devices is increasing, creating more risk to home networks. IoT device lifetimes often exceed vendor support times, and unprotected devices which have poor configurations (or known unpatched vulnerabilities) are very likely to be hacked. It’s a numbers game: both residential and enterprise networks are being scanned for IoT devices by automated scripts and then attacked, which means that a vulnerable device is a sitting duck for automated malicious activities.
Phishing is a major cybersecurity issue. Every month, end-users in around 56% of homes attempt to open at least a single phishing link. This is extremely worrying due to the major negative impact that a successful phishing attack can have on private data, finances, as well as business and infrastructure security.
The Outlook for Consumer Home Network Security
Unattended (mostly IoT) and attended devices (smartphones and computers) face different threats: the latter face growing phishing threats, while background devices can be targeted en-masse by botnet malware.
While attended device security depends on the user’s behavior, unattended device security depends on vendors and device configurations, as well as the time users spend fine tuning the security of their devices. In any case, such devices get bombarded by automated scanners and exploitation services constantly.
There is a growing need for security regulation in the connected device space, but it should be noted that no regulation can bridge the gap between when a vulnerability is discovered, and an update is installed. In some cases, we do not expect end-users to update their devices due to technical difficulties, poor notification practices, buggy patches or lack of time and priority.
As evidenced by our data, an average household is threatened every other day. While the number of connected devices continues to grow, we expect IoT security to become an even greater issue. While more consumers should install and use security software on attended devices, they also increasingly need protection for other connected devices on their networks. Perimeter protection with CUJO AI Sentry can help network service providers protect their end-user networks.
For more data about the threats targeting consumer devices and the most attacked device types, download the latest cybersecurity report by CUJO AI Labs.