UK government staff targeted by billions of malicious emails


A research conducted by a research firm, Comparitech, says that billions of malicious emails target UK government employees every year. And some of them might have unknowingly clicked on the malicious links, thus putting themselves and the businesses they are serving in jeopardy.

As per the freedom of information request submitted to about 273 organizations, organizational heads from 262 organizations agreed to disclose critical internal documents to the researchers conducting the study.

And in that study, it was revealed that the about 760,000 government employees received nearly 2.7 billion malicious emails last year.

As most of them were blocked by automated firewalls, some made it to the inboxes of employee email IDs, leading them to malicious links and threats thereafter.

Amongst the biggest of all threats, ransomware infections emerged at the number one position. Meaning, out of the 59,360 suspicious links clicked by the government employees of the UK, about 13k were detected to have led them to file encrypting malware infections. Others were of different genre such as mining software, phishing and social engineering attacks.

Paul Bischoff of Comparitech said that one government department defended itself from over 97 attacks in just 30 days. And from the remaining 187, about 71 of the government organizations expressed their happiness that they did not suffer any ransomware attack in 2021.

Thus, CIOs and CTOs heading government organizations are being urged to take necessary proactive security measures to safeguard themselves from malicious attacks via emails.


Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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