In the telecommunications landscape, cloud applications have become essential tools for daily operations. However, with the increased adoption of these technologies, there has also been a significant rise in cyber threats exploiting these applications to spread malware.

Telecommunications users actively utilize cloud applications for uploading and downloading files, with a strong preference for Microsoft suites, including OneDrive, Teams, and Outlook. Notably, Microsoft OneDrive is the most used application for data uploads, with 30% of users uploading data daily, significantly higher than the average in other sectors.

Despite a global decline in malware downloads in the second half of 2023, a resurgence was observed in early 2024. Telecommunications organizations are particularly targeted by malware distributed through cloud applications, with an incidence 7% higher than in other sectors. The applications most exploited by attackers include Microsoft OneDrive, GitHub, and Outlook.

Types of Malware
The most common malware families targeting telecommunications include the remote access trojan Remcos, the downloader Guloader, and the infostealer AgentTesla. These malware types often use legitimate cloud services to distribute their payloads, increasing the challenge of detecting and mitigating threats.

Companies in the telecommunications sector must be especially vigilant and adopt advanced security measures to protect their systems and data. It is crucial to implement security solutions that offer visibility and control over the use of cloud applications, as well as train staff to recognize and respond appropriately to threats.

The adoption of cloud applications in the telecommunications sector offers numerous operational advantages but also presents significant risks. Organizations must balance the use of cloud technologies with robust security strategies to prevent and mitigate cyber threats.

According to the Netskope Threat Labs report, telecommunications organizations are the primary victims of malware distributed through cloud applications, highlighting the importance of adopting effective security measures.

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