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South Africa Moves into Top-Five Geographies Globally for Malicious Emails

Symantec.cloud Intelligence Report: Daily targeted attacks increase four-fold since January.

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Symantec Corp. today announced the results of the November 2011 Symantec.cloud Intelligence Report which saw South Africa move into the top five geographies globally for virus rate which this month jumped to 1 in 222,5 emails blocked as malicious. The survey also saw South Africa maintain top position as the most targeted geography for phishing with 1 in 96,2 emails identified as phishing.

This month’s analysis also reveals that the global number of daily targeted attacks has increased four-fold compared to January this year. On average 94 targeted attacks were blocked each day during the month of November.

“The aim of these targeted attacks is to establish persistent access to the targeted organisation’s network, in many cases with the aim of providing remote access to confidential data. They have the potential to cause serious damage to an organisation and in the long term represent a significant threat against the economic prosperity of many countries,” said Mark Smissen, business development manager, Symantec.cloud.

“Targeted attacks are designed to gather intelligence, steal confidential information or trade secrets, and disrupt operations or even destroy critical infrastructure.”

The public sector has been identified as the most frequently targeted industry during 2011, with approximately 20,5 targeted attacks blocked each day. The chemical and pharmaceutical industry was second highest ranked, with 18,6 blocked each day. In this latter case, many of these attacks surfaced later in the year. Similarly, this is also the case for the manufacturing sector, which was placed third most-targeted with approximately 13,6 attacks blocked each day.

“It is important to remember that without strong social engineering, or ‘head-hacking,’ even the most technically sophisticated attacks are unlikely to succeed. Many attacks include elements of social engineering and are based on information we make available ourselves through social networking and social media sites. Once the attackers are able to understand our interests or hobbies, with whom we socialise and who else may be in our networks; they are often able to construct more believable and convincing attacks against us,” Smissen said.

While targeted attacks are on the increase, the global spam rate has now reached its lowest level in three years. The effect of spam volumes three years ago was very dramatic and spam accounted for 68,0% of global emails. Recently the decline has been much slower, but spammers have also adapted to using more targeted approaches and exploiting social media as alternatives to email. Pharmaceutical spam is now at the lowest it has been since we started tracking it, accounting for 32,5 % of spam, compared with 64,2% at the end of 2010.

November 2011 highlights:

Spam: The global ratio of spam in email traffic fell by 3,7 percentage points since October to 70,5 percent (1 in 1,42 emails).

70,1 percent of email traffic in South Africa was spam.

Phishing: The global phishing rate increased by 0,04 percentage points, taking the average to one in 302,0 emails (0,33 percent) that comprised some form of phishing attack.

Globally, South Africa stays in the top position with one in 96,2 emails identified as phishing.

Email-borne Threats: The global ratio of email-borne viruses in email traffic was one in 255.8 emails (0,39 percent), a decrease of 0,03 percentage points since October 2011. Further analysis also shows that 40,2 percent of email-borne malware contained links to malicious Web sites, an increase of 20,1 percentage points since October 2011.

November saw South Africa jump to the top five list with one in 222,5 emails blocked as malicious.

Geographical Trends:

Spam

  • In the US, 69,9 percent of email was spam and 69,5 percent in Canada.
  • The spam level in the UK was 69,5 percent.
  • In The Netherlands, spam accounted for 70,5 percent of email traffic, 70,1 percent in Germany, 70,4 percent in Denmark.
  • In Australia 68,6 percent of email was blocked as spam, 69,2 percent in Hong Kong and 68,0 percent in Singapore, compared with 66,6 percent in Japan.
  • Spam accounted for 70,1 percent of email traffic in South Africa and 74,3 percent in Brazil.

Phishing

  • South Africa once again became the country most targeted for phishing attacks, with one in 96,2 emails identified as phishing.
  • The UK was the second most targeted country, with one in 167,0 emails identified as phishing attacks.
  • Phishing levels for the US were one in 461,8 and one in 242,4 for Canada.
  • In Germany phishing levels were one in 426,2, one in 781,5 in Denmark and one in 250,4 in The Netherlands.
  • In Australia, phishing activity accounted for one in 361,0 emails and one in 517,0 in Hong Kong; for Japan it was one in 2,058 and one in 609,7 for Singapore.
  • In Brazil one in 775,3 emails was blocked as phishing.

E-mail-borne threats

  • The UK remained at the top of the table with the highest ratio of malicious emails in November, with one in 149,4 emails identified as malicious.
  • Switzerland had the second highest rate, with one in 185,6 emails identified as malicious.
  • In South Africa returned to the top-5 list this month with one in 222,5 emails blocked as malicious.
  • Virus levels for email-borne malware in the US reached one in 360,1 and one in 219,9 in Canada. In Germany virus activity reached one in 275,0, one in 710,5 in Denmark and in The Netherlands one in 238,2.
  • In Australia, one in 326,2 emails was malicious and one in 325,8 in Hong Kong. For Japan the rate was one in 1,147, compared with one in 450,0 in Singapore.
  • In Brazil, one in 570,6 emails in contained malicious content.

The November Symantec Intelligence Report provides greater detail on all of the trends and figures noted above, as well as more detailed geographical and vertical trends.

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Be 1 Of 3 High Growth Scale Ups Sponsored By FNB & Vumela To Participate For FREE In 10X Accelerator Program (Value Of R650 000)

FNB and Vumela are sponsoring 3 high growth Scale Ups on the 10X Accelerator Program, kicking off in February 2018.

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The 10X Program has received amazing reviews and huge interest, because of its unique approach:

  • Focused on businesses that are Scaling Up (past the start-up / typical Accelerator phase)
  • Business Scale Up focus, not capital raising / exit focused
  • Broad company-building focus, not a narrow technology commercialisation focus
  • Addressing the gnarly and complex issues that come with growth, like hiring, firing, performance managing, management systems, Boards, etc
  • 18 months of intensive, hands on support
  • Working with seasoned Scale Up leaders

Here’s what delegates are saying:

“We’ve grown really fast, but without the 10X Program we probably wouldn’t exist anymore because things were starting to break… It’s a game changer… Unlike most other workshops like this I have experienced, 10X-e combines theoretical concepts with real world applications so that I can make immediate changes to my business. The tools are easy to execute throughout my organisation and get the needed buy in from my management team. We now have every staff member fully aligned to the company’s strategy… we’re now scaling much faster and with less resources than we would have normally required without the 10x process…. – James Wilkinson, Founder, Sonic Telecoms

Related: Expansion Funding Options For Your Growing Business

“Within 1 month I doubled sales revenue, because it became so clear I had 2 people in the wrong roles. We swapped their roles and doubled revenue immediately.” – Richard Rayne, Founder, iLearn 

“I used to feel like I was sprinting up a sand-dune. If I stopped sprinting for a moment, the business would slide downhill. But since the program, we have much more momentum and its not all up to me because the entire team is pulling together in the same direction. Things won’t grind to a halt if I am away for 2 weeks” – Andrew Cook, Founder, Smoke Customer Intelligence

‘The [10X Strategy Workshop] process gave us the framework to focus and say no to distractions … [key] part of our journey to drive relentless focus. The Workshop catalysed us working on our business and not just in it… [and] supported a period of advancement… and scale’. – Brad McGrath, co-Founder, Zoona

‘The upfront Path To Scale Boot Camp… got us all thinking the same way and on the same page about how to Scale. It is something we have carried with us and that has guided us ever since.’. – Aisha Pandor, co-Founder, SweepSouth

The Program is worth R650k. FNB & Vumela are sponsoring 3 qualifying Companies.  Seats will be awarded to businesses with the greatest Scale Up potential.

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R33 Million Boost For Job Creation And Innovation In SA

The Craft + Design Institute (CDI) has launched R33 Million in funding to boost SME growth, job creation and innovation.

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The CDI has raised the R33m to establish three funds – a Growth Fund, an Innovation Fund and a Loan Book – these funds will be managed by its investment arm, CDI Capital.

The funding will be for developing 60 growth oriented SME’s and 20 innovative technological solutions – and to create 600 permanent jobs in the process over three years.

This funding has been enabled by the National Treasury’s Jobs Fund through the Government Technical Advisory Centre (GTAC), the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA), and the Western Cape Department of Economic Development and Tourism (DEDAT).

CDI Capital was specifically incorporated as a CDI subsidiary in 2016 to catalyse funding for SMEs. A level 1 B-BBEE company, it aims to combine government grants with corporate Enterprise Development spend and private funds to de-risk investments in SME’s to stimulate growth and returns.

Related: 3 Things You Must Have In Place To Get That Start-up Bank Finance

The Growth Fund is open to businesses with turnover or assets of more than R1m with the ability to create permanent jobs. Applications open on the 27th of November and close on the 31st of December 2017. For specific criteria and more information on the grant please visit www.cdicapital.co.za/GrowthFund

The Design Innovation Seed Fund (DISF) is open to inventors who believe they have protectable innovative technological solutions that could impact on specific sectors and could create permanent jobs. This is the third round of this fund. Applications open on the 27th of November and close on the 31st of December 2017. For specific criteria and more information on the grant please visit www.cdicapital.co.za/DISF

In addition to the grant funding products, CDI Capital will also launch a R3.5m working capital and term loan facility at reduced rates for the duration of the three-year project to provide access to cash flow during the growth stage of these, and other qualifying SME’s.

 

The CDI has 16 years of experience in SME development and started supporting development in the craft and design sectors nationally in 2015. Signaling this change, the organisation changed its name in September from the Cape Craft + Design Institute to The Craft + Design Institute.

According to Erica Elk, Executive Director of the CDI, it was a landmark moment in the organisation’s history.

“Over the past few years our team has successfully taken our services across the country – we have conducted a business and product development workshop series in every single province and received incredibly positive feedback. The message clearly is ‘more please’.”

Elk said that there is a consensus in South Africa today that SMEs hold the solution to our intractable problems of a sluggish economy and high unemployment rates.

“In most countries, SMEs play a vital role as drivers of economic growth, innovation and job creation, but, in South Africa, this value is yet to be properly realised. To achieve this, the challenges experienced by SMEs need to be addressed. Namely access to markets, finance and credit, infrastructure, resources for R&D, and access to adequately skilled and work ready labour.”

She added that the CDI, through its specialised investment arm CDI Capital, is gearing up to provide solutions to some of these challenges, particularly in the craft and design sector and related sectors where design and innovation can catalyse growth.

“Our first Jobs Fund project, completed successfully in December 2015, had 45 participating companies creating 464 jobs off an investment of R14.5m. This was 105% of the target of jobs to be created. Participating SMEs grew their combined annual revenue by 73% over three years – from R60m to R104m. Funds were used to improve their products, processes and competitiveness through the acquisition of new machinery or specialist staff, and to expand local and international market reach.”

“We also completed a first round of DISF grants in 2016, and are currently working with seven innovative SMEs in round two – round one attracted private funding of over R10m in equity funding into some of the high-potential innovators. The DISF gives innovators and entrepreneurs in the Western Cape an opportunity to get the finance and support needed to get their ideas to the next stages.”

“We have put a significant amount of work into developing these offerings, not only ensuring good governance and appropriate monitoring and evaluation measures, but realising real and sustainable impact with the businesses we support. We are excited to have raised R33m to launch this new funding for SMEs, and we thank our funders and supporters – we look forward to making meaningful investments.”

Related: 6 Great Tips For A Successful Shark Tank Pitch

“Now – having led the way with investment from the public sector – we would like to partner with the private sector to support and strengthen this initiative. We believe this project – which aims to catalyse innovation, support growth orientated SME’s and create 600 jobs – would be an ideal Enterprise Development spend opportunity. CDI would gladly partner with corporate growth orientated accelerators and mentorship programmes to further strengthen the support offered to the participating SMEs.”

 

Najwah Allie-Edries, Deputy Director General: Employment Facilitation within the Jobs Fund:

“The Jobs Fund supports this initiative in recognition of the critical role that SMEs play in creating a more inclusive economy and job creation and also because it will contribute toward CDI becoming a more self-sustaining entity. The aim of this initiative is to provide appropriate financing options to SMEs in the craft and design sector in order to catalyse sustainable growth which will result in attracting further investment into a sector that has often been neglected. The introduction of a revolving loan facility will not only ensure that over time more SMEs can benefit from access to finance, the enhanced revenue streams will also contribute to the CDI’s goal of becoming a sustainable entity in its own right.”

Mr Vusi Skosana, Head: Technology Stations & IATs (TSP) at TIA, said that the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA), an agency of the Department of Science and Technology, was established with an objective to support the State in stimulating and intensifying technological innovation in order to improve economic growth and the quality of life of all South Africans by developing and exploiting technological innovations.

Solly Fourie, Head of Department, Department of Economic Development and Tourism, Western Cape Government:

“We know that there is a strong need to develop and improve the socio-economic conditions of the citizens in our region. To this end, the creation of a healthy and vibrant regional innovation system can be a catalytic driver of sustainable economic growth and development. But neither DEDAT, nor the WCG, are able to tackle this alone. The partnerships created through the Seed Fund and Jobs Fund; and initiatives like it, go a long way to creating an enabling regional innovation system in which we collectively draw on the Quad helix’s expertise and resources; promote local industry and attract and grow innovative businesses. By doing this, we are crafting the best possible conditions for businesses to develop in this region.”

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Start-ups Require A Strong Legal Foundation Webber Wentzel Ignite

Entrepreneurs, start-ups and scale-ups are a lifeline to South Africa’s economy.

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Entrepreneurs, start-ups and scale-ups are a lifeline to South Africa’s economy.  It is however a harsh environment and many entrepreneurs find themselves in a situation where they are wearing many hats and navigating potential pitfalls without the knowledge that many professionals have from years of experience.

This is especially true from a legal point of view where entrepreneurs are faced with real world regulatory challenges that could have far-reaching consequences on their fledgling business, such as financial regulatory, tax, exchange control and intellectual property.

A common example is that start-ups often forget to secure the rights and licenses they need to operate. For example, would you invest or partner with a company that:

  • doesn’t have a legal right to use their brand
  • doesn’t have proprietary technology; and/or
  • is reliant on a third party agreement that doesn’t permit commercial use?

Related: How To Raise Working Capital Finance

These avoidable shortcomings often result in failures at critical junctures. The specialist legal services needed to avoid these problems are typically not easily accessible to start-ups.

With this in mind, Webber Wentzel has launched a project called ‘Webber Wentzel Ignite’ – a legal incubation programme that will provide selected entrepreneurs and innovators from any sector with:

  • tailored legal services valued at up to ZAR 100,000;
  • bespoke mentoring and training support – focused on legal knowledge and developing key legal skills relevant to start-up businesses; and
  • targeted networking and profile-raising opportunities.

Video about Ignite

Webber Wentzel is not asking for equity or exclusivity; only an opportunity to connect and make a difference as a trusted advisor over the long-term. It is a wonderful opportunity that will set the selected entrepreneurs apart in the marketplace. Applications close on 15 January 2018

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