What is a Hybrid Attack? Today’s Biggest Cyber Threat

December 14, 2023
Mark Wojtasiak
Vice President of Product Marketing
What is a Hybrid Attack? Today’s Biggest Cyber Threat

The current approach to detecting and stopping cyberattacks that rely on signatures, anomalies, and rules to see and stop cyber criminals from penetrating your organization and stealing your data isn’t working. 

If it was, 71% of analysts worldwide (and 84% in the US) wouldn’t admit that their organization could be compromised and they wouldn’t even know about it. 

The fault is hardly theirs. Attack surfaces are expanding faster than analysts and their tech stacks can detect them. 

Recently, 63% of surveyed SOC analysts said their attack surface has significantly increased in the past three years alone, and 97% of analysts worry they will miss an event because it was buried in a flood of security alerts.

A new perspective and approach are desperately needed.

All Enterprises Are Hybrid Enterprises

The reality is that as enterprises have shifted to hybrid and multi-cloud environments, they have become, without exception, hybrid enterprises. As a result, SOC analysts are continuously faced with more:  

  • Attack surface for attackers to exploit and infiltrate
  • Methods for attackers to evade defenses and progress laterally 
  • Noise, complexity, and hybrid attacks 

What’s more, all enterprises will continue to be hybrid going forward. 

All Modern Attacks Are Hybrid Attacks

Given this fact, all modern attacks on enterprises should be viewed as hybrid attacks. To do otherwise is to remain stuck with the status quo of more unknown attacks and more data theft. 

In fact, according to IBM Security Research, in 2021, 45% of breaches were cloud-based. Vectra AI predicts this will be well over 50% in 2023 because the shift to hybrid cloud infrastructure is not slowing down, nor is attackers’ ability to take advantage of it. This leaves your team virtually in the dark when it comes to detecting where you’ve been breached.

Who can afford that? 

A practical definition of a hybrid attack is one that can start with anyone or anything, move anywhere at any time, and disrupt business operations at scale, despite having every preventative measure in place. This means that more attacks are hiding from and evading your best detection efforts.

To put it bluntly, your team can’t defend against unknown hybrid attacks with your current approach. 

An Integrated Approach to Defending Against Hybrid Attacks

However, once you adopt a holistic and integrated approach to hybrid cloud cyber resilience, your entire security posture changes radically for the better.  

There are three core pillars of our integrated approach to identifying hybrid attacks.

  1. Defend against unknown exposure — Know where your hybrid cloud environment is exposed to attackers. Knowing where attackers have proven to infiltrate your organization and applying that knowledge to get ahead of it is critical to improving hybrid risk posture. Case in point, CheckPoint Software noted that 75% of successful cyberattacks in 2020 used vulnerabilities that were over two years old.
  2. Eliminate unknown compromises — Know when hybrid attackers have infiltrated your environment. Not knowing this is the result of too many siloed tools sending disparate detection signals to SOC analysts. Eliminate the complexity that makes it easier for hybrid attacks to infiltrate, blend in, and progress inside your organization unseen. 
  3. Quickly detect and resolve unknown hybrid attacks — Know where hybrid attackers are moving laterally, progressing inside your environment. Knowing how hybrid attackers move laterally across domains to progress their campaigns goes a long way to stopping them early and preventing data exfiltration.

Signal Clarity Is the Only Solution to Hybrid Attacks

To promptly and effectively deal with hybrid attacks, your SOC team needs the one thing they continue to lack — signal clarity. The lack of a clear hybrid attack signal is the reason system intrusions, aka Advanced Persistent Threats (APTs), doubled from 2020 to 2021 accounting for 40% of data breaches.

Vectra AI delivers signal clarity across your entire attack surface so you can identify the most urgent threats in a matter of minutes, categorize them by attack method, and prioritize them by urgency. With signal clarity, your SOC team is efficient, effective, and resilient in spotting and stopping hybrid attacks.

Interested in learning more about how Vectra’s Advanced Signal Intelligence helps companies like KPMG gain the upper hand against hybrid attacks? Check out the proof and power behind our integrated signal.