By Hodgson Consulting & Solutions | April 2, 2021
Microsoft routinely releases its Security Signals reports and the report for March 2021 revealed that “80% of enterprises have experienced one firmware attack during the past two years, but less than a third of security budgets are dedicated to protecting firmware.” (zdnet.com, 2021) Microsoft is aware of the rise in firmware attacks and was curious as to why enterprises have not been taking them more seriously. As such that employed Hypothesis Group to conduct a study of the matter. Per Microsoft, “the study showed that current investment is going to security updates, vulnerability scanning, and advanced threat protection solutions. Yet despite this, many organizations are concerned about malware accessing their system as well as the difficulty in detecting threats, suggesting that firmware is more difficult to monitor and control. Firmware vulnerabilities are also exacerbated by a lack of awareness and a lack of automation.” (zdnet.com, 2021)
Microsoft is doing what it can to assist in combatting this issue. “Microsoft launched a new range of “Secured-Core” Windows 10 PCs last year to counter malware that tampers with the code in motherboards that boots a PC. It also released a UEFI scanner in Microsoft Defender ATP to scan inside the firmware file system for the presence of malware.” (zdnet.com, 2021)
How it Could Affect You:
The rise in these sorts of attacks is a direct nod to what hackers have known and have been working on for some time now. Keep in mind that each time a trend in cyber threats and attacks emerge, hackers have usually been exploring the option for months or even years beforehand. According to Microsoft, “many devices in the market today don’t offer visibility into that layer to ensure that attackers haven’t compromised a device prior to the boot processor at runtime below the kernel. And attackers have noticed.” (zdnet.com, 2021) “Firmware lives below the operating system and is where credentials and encryption keys are stored in memory, where it’s not visible to antivirus software.” (zdnet.com, 2021) Microsoft believes that security teams are not fully examining the potential extent of future threats based on the data the study provided. If you are a business owner, you don’t want the potential of these sorts of activities by hackers to be taking place beneath the surface.
Hodgson Can Help:
Hodgson Consulting & Solutions specializes in securing data and information loss prevention for companies with multiple locations and/or a remote workforce. Hodgson is an industry expert in systems monitoring and we make sure to stay alert and aware, even where others may have blind spots. We monitor our clients’ systems 24/7 to ensure their systems and servers are in good standing. We offer full solutions for your IT needs, not just quick or Band-Aid fixes. Contact us to receive a FREE Dark Web Scan and also learn more about our Managed Security Service Plans. Sign up below for your FREE Dark Web Scan today!