4. Banks Under DDoS Attack
The year marked a significant increase in the number of distributed-denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks against banks and other financial institutions. A nearly 80-fold increase in malicious traffic was recorded from the fourth quarter 2011 to the first quarter of this year, and the attacks continued on an ongoing basis. Attackers had begun using shorter, stronger bursts of traffic and were seen to increase the overall intensity of the exploits, increasing their firepower. By the end of the year, the sophistication increased to include obvious decoy attacks that would attract attention of security personnel while the more insidious portion of the attack occurred elsewhere on the network.