The “Cyber Threat Status Report”, prepared by STM’s cyber security experts, consists of 8 separate topics.
The report includes many current and interesting topics such as the interruptions and vulnerabilities experienced in the artificial intelligence tool ChatGPT, the cyber security competence model in the energy sector, the security of cyber-physical systems, and the countries that carry out the most cyber attacks.
“ChatGPT Plus”, the paid subscription version of ChatGPT, which is one of the most popular artificial intelligence applications of recent times and exceeded the threshold of 100 million users in the first months of its release, was launched in February, while ChatGPT experienced a few hours of interruption in the last week of March.
According to STM’s report, an open source library used by ChatGPT caused this outage, and there were vulnerabilities in this library that allowed users to view each other’s chat histories.
In its statement, OpenAI pointed out that if 1.2 percent of ChatGPT Plus users actively used the platform in a certain time zone, data disclosure in payment information came to the fore. In the report, it was determined that data such as name, surname, e-mail address, billing address, credit card type, last four digits of the credit card and expiration date of the credit card were displayed for the active users in that time period.
In another research, it was revealed that, thanks to a file placed in ChatGPT, users’ accounts were hacked when they clicked on this link. It was stated that attackers were able to access users’ account information, chat histories and billing information in this way, while OpenAI closed this vulnerability in a short time.
Another issue discussed in the report was CPS (Cyber-Physical System), that is, cyber-physical systems.
The use of CPS, which are real-time embedded systems in which physical and digital components work together, is becoming more and more common in daily life. The co-operation of automatic machines and robots in a factory, data sharing of medical devices in the health sector, or real-time data sharing in systems in many civil-military areas stand out as examples of CPS.
This digitalization brings with it some risks. In the report, it was emphasized that CPSs can be exposed to cyber attacks by malicious people, which can cause systems to be shut down, data loss, malfunctions and even physical harm to users as a result of these attacks.
In the report, which stated that necessary measures should be taken in data and network security and software security to protect from these threats, “Security experts should constantly evaluate CPS systems, make updates and detect security vulnerabilities.” warning was placed.
Cyber security in critical energy facilities
In the report, the “Cyber Security Competency Model Regulation in the Energy Sector”, which entered into force on June 6, 2023 and aims to improve the cyber security of industrial control systems used in the energy sector, was also discussed in detail.
The classification of cyber security practices in critical energy facilities, from electricity distribution companies to the natural gas distribution sector, the competency model and the steps to be taken are included in the report.
The most cyber attacks are from the USA
Data from STM’s own Honeypot sensors also revealed the countries where the most cyberattacks were collected worldwide.
In the second quarter of the year, a total of 3 million 304 thousand attacks were reflected on STM’s honeypots (honeypot-trap servers).
The country that caused the most cyber attacks was the USA with 194 thousand, while Russia took the second place with 185 thousand attacks. These countries were followed by India, France, Netherlands, Germany, China, Vietnam, Poland and Turkey.