Phishing and ransomware are among the main year-end cyberattacks in Latin America
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Phishing and ransomware are among the main year-end cyberattacks in Latin America


Cirion Technologies expert warns that companies face security and infrastructure challenges.

E-commerce, banking and finance are the sectors most targeted by cyberattacks at this time of year. 

Lima, December 2023. The month of December, marked by Christmas and New Year festivities, becomes a critical period in which cybercriminals take advantage of the significant increase in transactions and the overload of online activity to endanger both companies and users. Several types of attack have been identified this month, but there has been a notable increase in social engineering attacks. In fact, 97% of cyberattacks use these techniques to gain access to credentials and require user interaction, allowing unauthorized access to companies’ servers and platforms.

According to Ricardo Pulgarín, Cirion’s Senior Security Solutions Architect for the LATAM region, the challenges faced by organizations are not just limited to security, but also to infrastructure. Pulgarín points out that “the end of the year acts as a catalyst for various attacks, highlighting the increase in cases of phishing and ransomware. December is a good time to take advantage of social engineering and exploit people’s innocence. Given attackers’ difficulty in accessing servers of large companies, cybercriminals direct their efforts at users who, believing in the fraudulent schemes, inadvertently facilitate unauthorized access.”

E-commerce companies experience a significant increase in activity during these festive dates, thus becoming especially susceptible to attacks. Christmas and end-of-year shopping generate exceptionally high activity, exposing them to risks such as financial data theft and credit card fraud. On the other hand, the banking and financial sectors faces similar challenges, because although they suffer attacks all year round, they intensify during this season, especially in relation to phishing and fraud attacks.

Pulgarín underscores that “phishing is a widely used method for stealing users’ keys. It’s common to receive fraudulent messages encouraging them to update their credit card details or provide financial access keys”. In addition, he emphasizes that phishing is not limited to email – it also occurs through voice messages, SMS, WhatsApp and even fraudulent phone calls. 

Additional risks

Pending updates have emerged as one of the most recurring tactics in recent ransomware attacks. There are cases in which attackers take advantage of the lack of system updates and patches to infect them, benefiting from public vulnerabilities to access information systems not only to cause damage, but also to hijack equipment and spread infections to third parties.

Ultimately, online shopping businesses count on an inherent risk.  According to Ricardo Pulgarín, from Cirion, this vulnerability is closely related to possible flaws in the applications themselves. Cybercriminals don’t exploit weaknesses in the server, network or protection systems, but rather the way in which the application was developed. In this context, technical and human behavioral factors converge, creating the conditions for even more vulnerability.

As a final recommendation, Cirion’s expert advises organizations to carry out detailed monitoring and exhaustive analysis to identify the critical technological components that affect their organizations the most. Based on this analysis, he suggests implementing measures to compensate for and mitigate the risks of cyberattacks. These measures range from establishing information security policies to addressing infrastructure aspects, ensuring that the relevant patches and updates are installed. For more information on Cirion’s cybersecurity solutions, visit the company’s website.

About Cirion:

Cirion is a leading digital infrastructure and technology provider, offering a comprehensive suite of fiber network, connectivity, colocation, cloud infrastructure, and communication and collaboration solutions with the purpose of furthering Latin America´s progress through technology. Cirion serves over 5,500 Latin America-based and multinational customers, including enterprises, government agencies, cloud service providers, wireline and wireless carriers, ISPs, and other leading businesses. Cirion owns and operates a facilities-based network and data center portfolio, with extensive coverage spanning across the Latin America region. Learn more about Cirion at

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