InfoSec 2011: The big themes

In the last financial year, the ICO received some 603 self-reported security breaches, the privacy body said.

Chris McIntosh, chief executive (CEO) of ViaSat, came out yesterday evening crticising the ICO for the confusion surrounding the figures, before calling on the body to exercise its powers more.

Smith told us the ICO would like the ability to fine companies more something McIntosh praised yet it was nevertheless concerning so much confusion could come out of a body which is supposed to crack down on the quality of FOI requests themselves.

Industrial attacks

The one-year anniversary of the detection of Stuxnet is nearly upon us and the pertinence of the discovery still resonates. Numerous security companies have been pushing out reports on attacks facing critical infrastructure providers (CIPs).

McAfee issued one on Tuesday showing eight in 10 CIPs had faced a significant DDoS attack in 2010. Almost a third said they were being hit by "large scale" DDoS attacks multiple times each month.

Today, Idappcom said it had seen a significant increase in the number of attacks targeting industrial control systems. The firm's traffic library this month contained 50 attacks alone related to SCADA systems the technology Stuxnet targeted.

Expect to see plenty more activity in this area over the next year. No doubt it'll be a big deal when the next InfoSec rolls around in 2012.

APTs, or targeted attacks

When we spoke to Sophos' James Lyne about how the Cyber Security Challenge would be looking to address the most current dangers, he jokingly shouted out "APTs," otherwise known as Advanced Persistent Threats, simultaneously mocking and highlighting one of the key security trends of 2011.

With the attack on RSA highlighting the dangers associated with APTs, they were always going to be a talking point at InfoSec 2011, as experts tried to determine whether they were being over-hyped or if they were a genuine rising concern.

When we caught up with security legend Bruce Schneier, he said the problem had been around for years, but businesses obviously still needed to take such targeted attacks seriously.

As hackers get increasingly focused and go after more specific targets, businesses will have to adopt their security strategies to stay safe.

Luckily, conferences like InfoSec are here to remind us all about the threats businesses face and how they could protect themselves.

Tom Brewster

Tom Brewster is currently an associate editor at Forbes and an award-winning journalist who covers cyber security, surveillance, and privacy. Starting his career at ITPro as a staff writer and working up to a senior staff writer role, Tom has been covering the tech industry for more than ten years and is considered one of the leading journalists in his specialism.

He is a proud alum of the University of Sheffield where he secured an undergraduate degree in English Literature before undertaking a certification from General Assembly in web development.