American cybersecurity company FireEye unveiled annual report according to which, currently there are more than 1900 different hacker groups in the world. In 2019, there were about 1,800 of them.
In 2020, experts discovered 650 new hack groups, and also removed about 500 groups from their threat tracker due to duplication and overlap with previously known clusters.
Among FireEye’s 1,900 known hacker groups, there are both “government” hackers (APT) and financially motivated groups (FIN), as well as unclassified groups (UNC), the information on which is still too little to place them in either of the first two categories.
Analysts write that a total of 514 new malware samples were used by cybercriminals in 2020. According to FireEye, over 500 new malware families have been created by hackers over the past year, which is in line with the previous year. This malware is divided into five main categories: backdoors (36%), downloaders (16%), droppers (8%), launchers (7%), and ransomware (5%).
Approximately 19% of the total number of malware samples were publicly available, and 81% were either developed by private individuals or their availability was severely limited.
The most common threats are called the Beacon backdoor, which is included in Cobalt Strike, the Empire post-exploitation framework, the Maze and Netwalker ransomware, and the Metasploit pentester solution. That is, three out of five threats are in fact not malware, but completely legitimate information security tools (Beacon, Empire, and Metasploit) that cybercriminals simply like to use.
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