The financial services sector, including insurance, also remains one of the most heavily targeted industries according to a new report

IT supply chains and geopolitical targets should become key focus areas for the cyber insurance and broking communities, CyberCube said in its latest report.

The cyber insurance analytics insurtech’s research – published yesterday (6 March 2023) and entitled CyberCube’s global threat briefing: update on cyber threat actor activity and expectations – also revealed that financial services were one of the six most heavily targeted industries.

The firm added that it anticipated there would be further attempts to compromise IT supply chains and geopolitical targets, such as government agencies and non-governmental organisations.

Meanwhile, CyberCube said healthcare remained under-secured relative to its inherent exposure, with more attacks expected in 2023.

It also warned that the arts and entertainment and manufacturing sectors were demonstrating high exposure and low security scores where their cyber risk was concerned. 

Other at risk industries included professional services, telecoms and retail and restaurants. 

The firm’s report examined criminal cyber threat activity and predicted the overall volume of ransomware and extortion attacks in the first six months of 2023 was likely to be on par with 2022.

It also stated that there would be increased targeting of critical civilian infrastructure in Ukraine.

William Altman, report author and cyber threat intelligence principal, said: “As Russia faces mounting losses, attacks on critical Ukranian civilian infrastructure could intensify.

”This includes attacks on public and local authorities. Cyber security will be critical to defending civilian life, including in the energy, financial, communications and vital software sectors in Ukraine.”

Strain on market

CyberCube said it believed that nation state cyber threat actors would soon begin to flex new cyber capabilities.

For example, it expected China-based threat actors to engage in zero day exploitation and disclosure attacks alongside a heightened level of nation state targeting of critical infrastructure targets worldwide.

Yvette Essen, CyberCube head of content, said: “Despite rising costs, most cyber insurance buyers are trying to maintain or increase their current level of cyber insurance coverage.

”Today, this trend has caused some strain in a market that continues to be characterised by limited capacity and increased demand. Nevertheless, the cyber reinsurance market is showing signs of stabilisation.”

CyberCube’s Exposure Databases enable reinsurers and brokers to perform a wide array of benchmarking, sensitivity and real-time analyses for cyber risks.