Cyber-attacks getting more sophisticated

Attacks targeting Latvia's cyberspace are becoming increasingly sophisticated and thoroughly planned, the Latvian Defense Ministry said in a report which on Wednesday was presented at a closed meeting of the parliament defense, interior and corruption prevention committee, the BNS newswire reported.

The ministry said that the Latvian financial and public sectors were the usual targets of cyberattacks.

Many of the security incidents occurring in Latvian cyberspace are still caused by negligence or carelessness. The Defense Ministry said outdated software was one of the reasons for the problem.

A similar situation has been reported also in Lithuania and Estonia, the ministry said.

The defense sector has identified "homework" that has to be done to deal with these problems, which include enhancing the work and coordination of the IT Security Council.

It is also necessary to boost the capacity of Latvian IT Security Incidents Response Institution Cert.lv and to improve cooperation with the private sector, particularly banks.

Cert.lv head Baiba Kaskina said earlier that during the third quarter of 2015, the rate of cybercrimes in Latvia declined against the second quarter of this year, but that the crimes became more dangerous and sophisticated. She said that the drop in the number of cybercrimes did not mean that online security had improved because the crimes tended to become more and more sophisticated.

At the beginning of November, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia concluded an agreement pledging to step up cooperation on cybersecurity and the protection of IT systems and networks.

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