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Agent Tesla, the most widespread spam malware in Bahrain: NGN experts

September 15, 2021

Agent Tesla, an extremely popular and dangerous “Malware-as-a-service” RAT used to steal information such as credentials, keystrokes, and clipboard data, is the most prevalent spam malware in the Kingdom of Bahrain, according to experts from “NGN International,” a full-fledged systems integrator and IT consultant based in Bahrain.

This was highlighted at a webinar organized by “NGN” during its monthly cybersecurity awareness platform “NGN Majlis”, where experts said that 66% of malware is introduced through e-mail attachments or links put into e-mails, and recommended users to avoid opening any incoming mail from individuals they don’t know, as well as opening unfamiliar files or links.

Mr. Mohammed Haroon, Head of Information Security at Payment International Enterprise (PIE), stated that while phishing is an ancient method that began to spread extensively in 2004, it has evolved in a vast and sophisticated fashion making it more hazardous and a lethal threat to cybersecurity. Phishing, he added, is a cyber-attack that utilizes email as a weapon to steal user information, login credentials, financial information, or to install malware or ransomware. He noted that, according to FBI statistics from 2020, intrusions via e-mail cost institutions and businesses more than 1.8 billion dollars.

“According to the most recent statistics from last August, e-mail phishing topped the list of the most common forms of cyberattacks, as it became more dangerous and sophisticated, followed by ransomware, whose dangers have more than doubled.” Mr. Haroon said.

Mr. Yaqoob Al Awadhi, CEO of NGN International, explained that the webinar is part of the company’s campaign to raise cybersecurity awareness among individual users and institutions in Bahrain, emphasizing the importance of such efforts at a time when recent statistics show that cybercrime will cost businesses worldwide an estimated $10.5 trillion annually by 2025, up from $3 trillion in 2015 with an annual increase of 15%.

Mr. Al Awadhi concluded: “NGN is always keen to highlight methods of defending the email attack surface, such as deploying an email security gateway, locking down inbound email traffic contents, locking, or flagging macros, deploying anti-spoofing (DMARC), and educating users through mock phishing exercises.”