The growing number of people capable of launching the recent spate of hacking on the
IT systems of British Airways, Slack, Rutgers University and GitHub are all signs of the fast-changing nature of the Internet. Cyber security professionals fears that such occurrences may likely become more common in the coming years.
Apparently launched by Chinese hackers on the coding collaboration site GitHub, a large distributed denial of service (DDoS) started last Thursday. Then Friday afternoon the systems of Rutgers University had a last similar attack which was linked to China and Ukraine.
Though those attacks do not appear to be connected to the hacks which involved British Airways, the workplace team chat site Slack or the person-to-person taxi service Uber. Slack established that hackers were able to access information in their user database, although not encrypted passwords, it believes, over a four-day duration in February, while objections about stolen frequent-flier points from British Airway’s Executive Club members began emerging two weeks ago. A number of Uber users have also reported seeming hacks into their accounts.
Patrick Nielsen, senior security researcher at Kaspersky Lab said, “As far as I know, there are no links between these hacks, and some (GitHub) are DDoS attacks while others (like Slack) are proper breaches. Also, it appears Slack was actually compromised in February. There are some theories that actors in China are behind the DDoS attack on GitHub because GitHub hosts anti-censorship tools, but early attribution, and indeed attribution in general, is very difficult no matter what kind of attack we’re talking about.”
According to an IT professional survey by Kaspersky Lab and B2B International, 94 percent of organizations worldwide has encountered at least one cyber security breach over the past 12 months. 12 percent of those reports were the victims of at least one under attack, up from the 9 percent reported by Kaspersky in 2012 and 2013.
Miller , however, said he believes that the number of incidents of multiple, large-scale hack attacks is on the rise in the coming years.
“I think it’s going to become a lot more commonplace,” he said. “The Internet is going to become a more hostile place.”