24 May 2011

Norwegian military hit by computer virus

The Norwegian military was recently targeted by cyber criminals in a “massive” attack, according to a report by newspaper VG.

The military was able to thwart the attack, but the event is considered the most significant ever encountered throughout Norway. The virus was released through email and appeared legitimate, claiming to be from another government department.

The email contained an attachment that, when clicked, released a virus. Although only one employee clicked on the virus attachment, the military could have been in great danger if more people had followed suit. According to the VG, the virus was handled quickly when warning signs were discovered.

“The defense systems are attacked daily, but it’s not often we see such a comprehensive attempt at infiltration as this was,” major general Roar Sundseth told VG Nett. “The trend is increasing, though, and the attackers are more goal-oriented.”

As Norway deals with potential attacks by cyber criminals, countries around the globe are dealing with the same issues. According to a recent study by WebSense, Canada has been a favorite target of cyber criminals. In 2010, the number of Canadian servers hosting phishing websites increased 319 percent from the previous year.