Blocking the botnet threat

CRIMINAL cyber attacks ­including distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks against businesses doubled last year, a UK Government survey has shown.

Tuesday, 27th March 2018, 9:34 am
Updated Tuesday, 27th March 2018, 9:38 am
HighNets Tony Miller has worked in the Capital for 15 years

It revealed that just under half (46 per cent) of all UK businesses identified at least one cyber attack during the last 12 months, two-thirds among medium-sized firms (66 per cent) and large companies (68 per cent).

According to telecoms firm HighNet, which counts the likes of the Capital Business Centre on Canning Street, Hearts, Hibs and other businesses among its clients, that has seen a surge in the need for security products.

The firm is one of the first in the UK to use a bespoke security shield which it says has helped eliminate attacks against government agencies, leading financial services, pharmaceutical, educational and ­internet organisations.

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HighNet’s head of mobile services, Edinburgh-based Tony Miller, who has worked in the city for 15 years and ­witnessed the transformation of the market, said: “The world of IT and telecoms is changing.

“Cyber crime is a real and dangerous threat to businesses, and we are proactively working hard to secure the data of our clients. In my mobile area of the business, we have a powerful mobile device management product that provides security never before seen on a mobile platform.”

HighNet, which manages more than 20,000 business lines in the UK, including in the Highlands and Glasgow, ­installed HighNet MDM ­security protection as part of a £6.5m network investment. It expects mobile users to double in 12 months,

Mobile, it says, along with ­attempts to hack voice mail, also has a growing problem with DDoS, which involves a network of compromised ­computers, known as a ‘botnet’, which flood an IP address ­leaving legitimate traffic unable to get through.

Cybercriminals can use DDoS attacks to cripple a firm’s ­services, or possibly extort money from a target. During the first two weeks of January, HighNet says its ­system blocked an ­attack every couple of days. Its systems intercepted fraud involving numbers from ­Morocco, Cuba, Liberia, Togo, Tunisia and Albania. Data by Akamai says ­attacks came in the US, UK and Germany followed by China and Russia.