After the US, the vast majority of hack attacks are perpetrated through Pacific Rim countries, finds a study by US security consulting company Predictive Systems.
South Korea is the country singly responsible for the most attacks, excluding those from the US, accounting for more than a third of all incidents. Second-place China is responsible for 29% of attacks by hackers. Also scoring highly are Japan and Taiwan. In total, says the study, Pacific Rim countries produce 91% of hack attacks outside the US. The UK and Germany also feature in the top ten, perpetrating seven per cent and two per cent of non-US attacks respectively.
The study highlights particular issues in technologically developing countries, where advanced infrastructures are being built without necessary security precautions.
Richard Smith, senior security analyst for Predictive Systems' Global Integrity unit, says that in such cases "it is possible that internal attackers could take advantage of lax security." This situation is compounded, adds Smith, by external attackers who might use such nations as a jump-off point for attacks.
Smith offers the proviso that despite appearances, the attacks may not originate from the country they seem to. External attackers, possibly from other countries, often take advantage of poor security to ‘bounce' computer attacks, masking their original location.