Pierluigi Paganini October 19, 2023

I’m proud to announce the release of the 11th edition of the ENISA Threat Landscape (ETL) on the state of the cybersecurity threat landscape.

The Europen Agency for cybersecurity ENISA releases its ENISA Threat Landscape 2023 (ETL) report, which is the annual analysis of the state of the cybersecurity threat landscape.

This is the 11th edition of the annual report and analyzes events that took place between July 2022 and July 2023.

The report highlights the impact of the geopolitical context on the threat landscape, during the above period ENISA experts observed the rise in malicious activities associated with cyberwarfare and hacktivism.

It identifies the top threats, major trends observed with respect to threats, threat actors and attack techniques, as well as impact and motivation analysis. It also describes relevant mitigation measures. This year’s work has again been supported by ENISA’s ad hoc Working Group on Cybersecurity Threat Landscapes (CTL).

ENISA Threat Landscape 2023

In the latter part of 2022 and the first half of 2023, the cybersecurity landscape witnessed a significant increase in both the variety and quantity of cyberattacks and their consequences. The ongoing war of aggression against Ukraine continued to influence the landscape. Hacktivism has expanded with the emergence of new groups, while ransomware incidents surged in the first half of 2023 and showed no signs of slowing down. The prime threats identified and analysed include:

  • Ransomware
  • Malware
  • Social engineering
  • Threats against data
  • Threats against availability: Denial of Service
  • Threat against availability: Internet threats
  • Information manipulation and interference
  • Supply chain attacks

For each of the identified threats, we determine impact, motivation, attack techniques, tactics and procedures to map relevant trends and propose targeted mitigation measures. During the reporting period, key findings include:

  • DDoS and ransomware rank the highest among the prime threats, with social engineering, data related threats, information manipulation, supply chain, and malware following.
  • A noticeable rise was observed in threat actors professionalizing their as-a-Service programs, employing novel tactics and alternative methods to infiltrate environments, pressure victims, and extort them, advancing their illicit enterprises.
  • ETL 2023 identified public administration as the most targeted sector (~19%), followed by targeted individuals (~11%), health (~8%), digital infrastructure (~7%) and manufacturing, finance and transport.
  • Information manipulation has been as a key element of Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine has become prominent.
  • State-nexus groups maintain a continued interest on dual-use tools (to remain undetected) and on trojanising known software packages. Cybercriminals increasingly target cloud infrastructures, have geopolitical motivations in 2023 and increased their extortion operations, not only via ransomware but also by directly targeting users.
  • Social engineering attacks grew significantly in 2023 with Artificial Intelligence (AI) and new types of techniques emerging, but phishing still remains the top attack vector.

The key findings and judgments in this assessment are based on multiple and publicly available resources which are provided in the references used for the development of this document. The report is mainly targeted at strategic decision-makers and policy-makers, while also being of interest to the technical cybersecurity community.

The report is available here:

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Pierluigi Paganini

(SecurityAffairs – hacking, ENISA Threat Landscape 2023)

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