Manufacturing sector most vulnerable to cyberattacks in APAC, report shows | Manufacturing Asia
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Manufacturing sector most vulnerable to cyberattacks in APAC, report shows

Most incidents lead to data theft and damaged brand image.

The manufacturing sector was the most-targeted industry by cyber attacks in Asia Pacific for two straight years now, accounting for 46% of all incidents in the region in 2023, according to a report by IBM.

In its 2024 X-Force Threat Intelligence Index report, APAC once again recorded the highest incident of cyber-attacks in the global manufacturing industry as the region accounted for 54% of all cases in the sector, followed by Europe (26%), North America (12%) and Latin American (5%).

APAC manufacturers have been hit with an onslaught of attacks to their brand reputation and data theft (27% each), while a fifth of the firms said these incidents led to extortion, data destruction and data leaks.

Globally, the manufacturing sector was the most-impacted sector for the third year in a row, representing 26% of cyber-attack incidents last year. 

45% of the attacks in the sector employed malware, while ransomware accounted for 17% of the incidents globally. Infostealers and backdoors accounted for 10% and 3%, respectively.

In terms of impact, global manufacturers experienced mostly credential harvesting, data theft and data leaks from the attacks, followed by data destruction and extortion.

“Although ‘AI-engineered attacks’ are receiving more attention due to the rise of generative AI in the current landscape, the biggest security threat in Asia Pacific remains to be known unpatched vulnerabilities,” said Catherine Lian, general manager and technology leader at IBM ASEAN. 

“Additional focus should also be placed on the region’s critical infrastructure and key industries such as manufacturing, finance and insurance, and transportation, with stress tests and well-prepared incidents response plans in place,” added Lian.

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