Identity under attack in Africa, MidEast


Cyber security threats

JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – THERE is an emerging identity crisis as cybercriminals double down on exploiting user identities to compromise enterprises worldwide.

This is according to the 2024 X-Force Threat Intelligence Index, released by IBM, which highlights the trend mostly in the Middle East and Africa region (MEA).

Scammers use valid local and cloud accounts, making up the primary cause of cyber attacks against organizations in the regions.

IBM warns this highlights the need for strong user access and control strategies by enterprises.

According to IBM X-Force, in 2023, cybercriminals saw more opportunities to “log in” versus hack into corporate networks through valid accounts – making this tactic a preferred weapon of choice for threat actors.

Saudi Arabia was the most targeted country in MEA, representing 40 percent of overall incidents that X-Force responded to in the region, followed by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) with 30 percent of incidents.

At the industry level, the most targeted sectors in the region were finance and insurance, making up 38 percent of incidents, followed by transportation and energy at 19 percent each.

“The rising threats to user identities pose a major security risk in the region,” said Babacar Kane, General Manager and Technology Leader of IBM Africa Growth Markets.

The executive said in today’s digital landscape, where people live, work, and engage with one another online, safeguarding sensitive information demanded proactive measures.

“As threat actors start to look to AI to optimize their attacks, embracing AI-powered solutions isn’t just a choice anymore but a necessity to fortify organizations against evolving cyber threats that will scale.”

– CAJ News

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