The Most Dangerous Times for Cyber Threats

Sue Marquette Poremba
Slide Show

Top 10 Cyber Security Threats of 2011 and Beyond

The next decade portends new threats that surpass those of years past in both intensity and impact.

I have seen articles that tell me the best time of day to look for the lowest price on airline tickets, the best day of the week to go to my favorite store to find the best bargains, and what day and time to buy a new car. I've even seen articles that warn when we are most susceptible to certain health problems, like heart attacks.


So, it should come as no surprise that when it comes to cyber fraud, there are certain hours of the day that are deemed the most dangerous. Those hours, according to iovation, come outside the normal workday, and also hit at different times, depending on the country where the transactions are launched.


In 2011, iovation stopped 50 million fraud attempts, at a pace of 150,000 attempts per day. Ghana topped the list of countries where fraudulent transactions were launched, followed by Nigeria, the Philippines, China and Israel. What's more, iovation was able to pinpoint the time of day when the transactions are at their highest points. In the country of origin, the attempts happened in early morning hours - between 1 and 2 a.m. Ghana time or between 3 and 4 a.m. in the Philippines, which correlated to evening or late night hours on the West Coast.


In a release, Greg Pierson, CEO and co-founder of iovation, had this to say about the most dangerous hours:

Unlike brick and mortar businesses, companies with online storefronts are open for business 24x7 and therefore susceptible to fraud around the clock.

Cyber attacks happen all through the course of a day; however, the evidence seems to be that the bad guys purposely increase their efforts when we are less likely to be paying attention. Those hits from Ghana may have originated in the middle of night in that country's time zone, but it was also when people in California were fighting rush-hour traffic to go home from work or while people in New York were settling in to watch American Idol. A study from CloudFare shows that a similar pattern of cyber attacks happen around the holidays.


Cyber attacks never sleep or take a holiday, and, for that reason, neither should security.

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