A report published by the Canadian Centre for Cyber Security, titled “National Cyber Threat Assessment 2020,” warns of risks associated with state-sponsored operations from China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea.
The report is based on both classified and unclassified sources and identifies current cyber threats and the likelihood that they will occur, and how Canadians could be affected.
“The second iteration of our unclassified assessment notes that the number of cyber threat actors is increasing, and they are becoming more sophisticated, that cybercrime will almost certainly continue to be the cyber threat most likely to affect Canadians and that Ransomware attacks will almost certainly continue to target large enterprises and critical infrastructure providers.” reads the report.
China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea are developing cyber capabilities to disrupt key Canadian critical infrastructure, including electricity supply.
Nation-state actors linked to the above countries pose the greatest strategic threats to Canada and according to the report, they will continue to attempt to steal Canadian intellectual property, especially related to COVID-19.
Threat actors are carrying out cyber espionage campaigns and online influence campaigns.
“The most sophisticated capabilities belong to state sponsored cyber threat actors who are motivated by economic, ideological, and geopolitical goals,” the center said.
“We assess that almost certainly the state-sponsored programs of China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea pose the greatest state-sponsored cyber threats to Canadian individuals and organizations,” continues the report.
“However, many other states are rapidly developing their own cyber programs, benefiting from various legal and illegal markets to purchase cyber products and services.”
The report also states that other states are rapidly building their cyber capabilities, for this reason the Canadian Government believes that state-sponsored hacking will continue to target Canadian businesses, academia, and governments.
“Defending Canada against cyber threats and related influence operations requires addressing both the technical and social elements of cyber threat activity. Cyber security investments will allow Canadians to benefit from new technologies while ensuring that we do not unduly risk our safety, privacy, economic prosperity, and national security.” concludes the report. “We approach security through collaboration, combining expertise from government, industry, and academia. Working together, we can increase Canada’s resilience against cyber threats.”
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(SecurityAffairs – hacking, nation state hacking)