In the latter half of 2023, Malware-as-a-Service (MaaS) infections emerged as the primary threat to organizations, per a recent Darktrace report. The report highlighted the integration of malware strains, such as combining remote access trojans (RAT) with information-stealing malware, making detection challenging. Notably, ViperSoftX, an information stealer and RAT malware, evolved with advanced evasion techniques since its first appearance in 2020. Another concern was Black Basta ransomware, which also distributed the Qbot banking trojan. Commonly observed MaaS tools during July to December 2023 included malware loaders, cryptominers, botnets, information-stealing malware, and proxy botnets. The report warned of a rise in Ransomware-as-a-Service (RaaS) attacks, with cybercriminals increasingly utilizing multifunctional malware for double and triple extortion tactics. Darktrace anticipated continued growth in MaaS and RaaS ecosystems in 2024, facilitating easier entry for cybercriminals. Furthermore, Darktrace noted an increase in sophisticated email attacks, such as phishing, with many bypassing verification checks and existing security layers. The researchers attributed this to the use of generative AI tools by attackers to create more convincing phishing campaigns and automate attacks. Read more about this topic in the 2023 End of Year Threat Report from Darktrace.
End of Year Threat Report