Sophos boosts Intercept X for Server to help businesses battle new blended cyberattacks

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Dan Schiappa, chief product officer, Sophos.

Sophos announced Intercept X for Server with Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR). By adding EDR to Intercept X for Server, IT managers can investigate cyberattacks against servers, a sought-after target due to the high value of data stored there.

Cybercriminals frequently evolve their methods and are now blending automation and human hacking skills to successfully carry out attacks on servers. This new type of blended attack combines the use of bots to identify potential victims with active adversaries making decisions about who and how to attack.

“When adversaries break into a network, they head straight for the server. Unfortunately, the mission critical nature of servers restrains many organizations from making changes, often significantly delaying patch deployment. Cybercriminals are counting on this window of opportunity. If organizations do fall victim to an attack, they need to know the full context of what devices and servers were hit in order to improve security as well as answer questions based on stricter regulatory laws. Knowing this information accurately the first time can help businesses resolve issues much faster and prevent them from a repeat data breach,” said Dan Schiappa, chief product officer, Sophos. “If regulators rely on digital forensics as evidence of lost data, then businesses can rely on the same forensics to demonstrate their data has not been stolen. Sophos Intercept X for Server with EDR provides this required insight and security intelligence.”

Anatomy of a Blended Cyberattack

Once the bots identify potential targets, cybercriminals use their savvy to select victims based on an organization’s scope of sensitive data or intellectual property, ability to pay a large ransom, or access to other servers and networks. The final steps are cerebral and manual: break in, evade detection and move laterally to complete the mission. This could be to quietly sneak around to steal intelligence and exit unnoticed, disable backups and encrypt servers to demand high-roller ransoms, or use servers as launch pads to attack other companies.

“Blended cyberattacks, once a page in the playbook of nation state attackers, are now becoming regular practice for everyday cybercriminals because they are profitable. The difference is that nation state attackers tend to persist inside networks for long lengths of time whereas common cybercriminals are after quick-hit money making opportunities,” said Schiappa.“Most malware is now automated, so it’s easy for attackers to find organizations with weak security postures, evaluate their payday potential, and use hand-to-keyboard hacking techniques to do as much damage as possible.”

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