Severity of software security risks rising

ONLINE CRIME

The total number of security flaws in software applications that hackers can use to their advantage has dropped in recent years, but the number of vulnerabilities considered “high risk” has increased as both criminals and researchers race to find weaknesses, a new report says.

The HP 2012 Cyber Security Report defines these high-risk vulnerabilities as holes in software that allow hackers to take unfettered control of a computer or server over the internet. It adds that finding these security holes has become a lucrative business for hackers, as well as for security companies working to keep their customers’ computers safe.

Patrick Hill, product line manager of DV Labs and HP enterprise security products, discussed the study on Tuesday at Toronto’s SC Congress Canada, an exposition for security professionals. He said that of all known security vulnerabilities discovered in 2011, 24 per cent of them were considered high risk, up from seven per cent in 2006

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