Retailers are now the top target for cybercriminals as the focus shifts from financial markets and institutions.
Retailers experienced nearly three times as many cyberattacks as those in the finance sector, last year's top target, according to the NTT 2016 Global Threat Intelligence Report.
"The retail and financial sectors process large volumes of personal information and credit card data," said Matthew Gyde, Dimension Data's group executive, security.
"Gaining access to these organizations enables cybercriminals to monetize sensitive data such as credit card details in the black market, which validates that cybercriminals are motivated by the rewards of financial crime."
"Retail companies are becoming increasingly popular targets as most process large volumes of personal information, including credit card data, in highly distributed environments with many endpoints and point-of-service devices," said Rory Duncan, head of security business unit at Dimension Data UK. "Such diverse environments can be difficult to protect."
The report notes a marked increase in the use of malware to breach organizations and that hackers are making use of telcos and hosting providers to conduct operations.
The past year has been relatively free of retail security breaches following 2013 and 2014's string of high-profile data breaches, including Target's which compromised the credit card and personal information of more than 70 million customers.
- see this Dimension Data press release
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