Cyberwarfare statistics: A decade of geopolitical attacks

Mar 19, 2020 by

Analysis of geopolitical and cyberwarfare attacks that have taken place since 2009.

There have been almost 500 documented geopolitical cyber attacks around the world since 2009. Making cyberwarfare a major technological threat to nations and their citizens.In this article, we hope to break down some of the numbers and gain insight into the nature of these attacks, where they originate from, and who they’re targeting.

Key observations

  • Between 2009 and 2018 there was a 440% increase in global cyberwarfare attacks.
  • 30% originated in China or Russia.
  • 26.3% targetted the USA.
  • 27% of attacks on the USA occurred in 2018.

Between 2009 and 2018 there was a 440% increase in global documented attacks.

The biggest increase in the number of attacks occurred in the last four years, with 2019 on-course to be the biggest year ever for geopolitical cyber attacks.

Global cyberwarfare attacks

The data combines state attacks on other states, individual and group attacks on states, and state attacks on internal individuals and groups.

Biggest sources of cyberwarfare attacks 2009-2019

By far the biggest actors on this scene are China and Russia, with almost 35% of Global attacks originating in either China or Russia. There have been 79 confirmed attacks on national governments that have originated in China, and 75 in Russia.

Next is North Korea and Iran, sharing 16% of global attacks, followed by the USA, where 3% of global attacks originated.

It’s extremely important to remember here, that due to the very nature of cyberwarfare and cyberespionage, many attacks go under the radar, so we don’t tend to hear about them.

Sources of cyberwarfare attacks excluding unknown

continued: Cyberwarfare statistics: A decade of geopolitical attacks

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