‘One in eight’ cyber attacks on Denmark successful: analysis

A survey of Danish business and organisations has found that up to one in eight attempted cyber attacks are successful.

'One in eight' cyber attacks on Denmark successful: analysis
File photo: Octav Ganea/AP/Ritzau Foto

The survey, carried out by the Danish Society of Engineers’ IT subsidiary IDA-it, asked a total of 668 individuals employed in IT or personal data-related roles in private or public organisations.

Two out of three businesses said they had been on the receiving end of cyber attacks within the last year, with one in eight of those attacks being successful, according to the results of the survey.

IDA-it’s chairperson Kåre Løvgren said that businesses and organisations should be better at sharing their experiences and methods for combatting the problem.

“Only around one third report a cyber attack to the police or (police security agency) Centre for Cyber Security [Center for Cybersikkerhed, ed.]. To me, that is a sign that there is a lack of a safe way to raise the alarm to prevent the infection from spreading,” Løvgren told Ritzau.

Meanwhile, the Centre for Cyber Security, a subdivision of Denmark’s national police security agency PET, described the threat against Denmark from cyber espionage and cyber crime as “very serious” in an annual evaluation announced on Monday.

The serious threat comes from foreign states and criminal networks that carry out online attacks in an attempt to access state secrets or personal data, Ritzau reports.

Denmark must accept that it is now a target for threats of this kind, Centre for Cyber Security head Thomas Lund-Sørensen told the news agency.

“[The threat] is particularly from cyber espionage, in which foreign states try to access our secrets through public systems or private companies,” Lund-Sørensen said.

“This may be of foreign policy, defence or military character. It is a threat that has existed for many years but is now digital in character,” he added.

A high level of threat is also reported to come from criminal networks who attempt to use data stolen from private individuals or businesses in order to make money, according to the agency.

The Centre for Cyber Security also considers the majority of Danish authorities and businesses to be subject to the threat.

“At management level, whether in private businesses or public authorities, there should be an awareness of the risk of cyber attacks associated with digitalisation,” Lund-Sørensen said.

“They should take relevant and sensible precautions to protect their networks, or ensure they have a plan for what to do if they are hit by a cyber attack,” he added.

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