Riptech: Internet Attacks Continue To Climb

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Internet-based attacks continued to rise this year, but companies appear to be fending off severe attacks, according to a report by managed security services firm Riptech.

The company, based here, on Monday issued its Internet Security Threat Report for the first half of 2002.

The report is based on data collected and analyzed from Jan. 1 to June 30 from more than 400 Riptech customers. The company said it studied more than 1 million possible attacks and more than 180,000 confirmed attacks for its report.

Attack activity for the first six months of this year was 28 percent higher than it was in the prior six-month period, for a projected annual growth rate of 64 percent, according to Riptech. Companies experienced an average of 32 attacks per week in the first half of 2002, compared with 25 attacks per week in the last six months of 2001.

"It is important to note that virtually all statistics indicate that Internet activity remains intense, pervasive and potentially severe," the company said in its report.

But the study also showed that the percentage of companies that suffered at least one severe attack in the past six months declined by nearly half. Riptech said the trend is due in part to "a gradual strengthening of security postures" of companies in the study.

The report also showed evidence that attackers are using the Code Red worm as a smoke screen to avoid detection. A small percentage of what appeared to be Code Red attacks came from Unix systems, which aren't susceptible to Code Red, Riptech said.

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