While Microsoft Windows was once the main target for cyber attacks, Apple is starting to take its share of viruses and Trojans as iPad and iPhones gain market dominance, says security technology company, McAfee.
McAfee released its 2011 Threat Predictions report today that pointed to trending buzz words that are set to be the biggest online threats in 2011. Everything from Google and Apple smartphones to geolocation services like Facebook Places are predicted to be abused by cybercriminals to target users.
Social networks are predicted to eventually overtake email as a leading avenue of cyber attack as social networking profiles reveal more personal information and business information. This includes URL-shortening services that are popular with sites like Twitter, now being used to mask malicious content.
“With more users adopting social networking for both personal and business activities, they have quickly become a highly vulnerable target for cybercriminals to exploit,” said Michael Sentonas, McAfee CTO for APAC.
With Internet TV growing from last year to now, McAfee Labs is expecting a growth of malicious apps for platforms like Google TV that could expose private data, moving viruses from the computer to the rest of the home. With home networking growing in popularity, threats are spreading to more areas of the home, giving hackers the ability to control physical devices in the household.
‘Hacktivism’ is also set to rise in the wake of Julian Assange’s WikiLeaks, as politically-motivated attacks grow in number and organize themselves through social networks.