Cyber warfare denotes the use of cyber-attack(s) to deliberately disrupt critical activities and infrastructure of a state or organization to cause strategic harm or even destroy both state and civilian property.
The Russian-Ukraine war of February 2022 significantly fueled the cyber warfare threat, with most organizations seeing increased threat activity after that month. Surprisingly, the United States emerged as the region with the most cyber warfare threat activity.
Below are some of the latest cyber warfare statistics to help you better understand this fast-growing cyber security threat.
7 Key Cyber Warfare Statistics (Editor’s Pick)
- 64% of IT & security professionals in 2022 believed the Russia-Ukraine war escalated cyber warfare.
- Global cyber warfare attacks in Q3 2022 grew by 28% compared to Q3 2021.
- In 2022, 90% of government IT respondents could defend their home country against cyber warfare threats.
- The US experienced the most increased cyber warfare threat activity in 2022 at 45%.
- Russia increased cyber warfare attacks against Ukraine by 250% in 2022 compared to 2020.
- 35.1% of Ukraine cyberwarfare attacks in 2022 were to gov.ua domains.
- 55% of healthcare IT experts have paused digitization due to the fear of cyber warfare threats.
Global Cyber Warfare Facts
1. In 2022, 33% of global organizations were not serious about the threat of cyber warfare.
That said, 24% of organizations admitted they felt unprepared to handle the threat of cyber warfare.
2. 64% of IT & security professionals in 2022 believed the Russia-Ukraine war escalated cyber warfare.
54% reported increased cyber warfare threat activity on their networks between May and October.
Meanwhile, 55% were forced to stall or stop their digital transformation projects due to the cyber warfare threat.
4. In 2022, multipurpose malware comprised 32% of all cyber warfare attacks worldwide.
Meanwhile, Infostealers, crypto-miners, and ransomware made up 24%, 16%, and 7% of global threats, respectively.
|Cyber Warfare Attack||Global Share|
5. Global cyber warfare attacks in Q3 2022 grew by 28% compared to Q3 2021.
In the same period, the average weekly number of attacks per organization reached over 1,130.
6. As of January 2023, 91% of organizations believe a catastrophic cyber event will occur in the next two years.
43% of organizational leaders believe that this attack will materially affect their organization and, thus, are devoting more resources toward day-to-day defenses.
Cyber Warfare Attack Statistics by Industry
7. In October 2022, the US Aviation industry was the subject of a cyber warfare attack.
The pro-Russian hacker group known as Killnet was the perpetrator of a dozen DDoS attacks on the industry.
8. In 2022, 70% of healthcare experts were very concerned about the impact of cyber warfare on their organization as a whole.
Meanwhile, 72% were worried about cyber warfare’s impact on their company’s infrastructure, while 68% were worried about its impact on its services.
9. 55% of healthcare IT experts have paused digitization due to the fear of cyber warfare threats.
In 2021, Armis found nine vulnerabilities, dubbed PwnedPiper, in critical infrastructure used in 80% of hospitals in North America. Threat actors could control 100% of these systems in case of a successful cyber attack.
10. 81% of government agencies in 2022 had a contingency plan in place if cyber warfare was detected on their network.
Another 79% had programs and best practices to respond to cyber warfare threats.
|Share of Government Agencies||Cyber Warfare Response Activity|
|81%||Have a contingency plan in case cyber warfare is detected on their network.|
|79%||Have programs and practices specifically designed to respond to cyber warfare.|
|84%||Know who to contact if they notice any act of cyber warfare on their organization’s network.|
|76%||Collaborates with organizations in the same industry, sharing information about cyber warfare threats.|
11. In 2022, 90% of government IT respondents could defend their home country against cyber warfare threats.
However, in case of a breach, 55% felt they could not handle or even repair the negative impact of the cyber warfare damage.
12. 43% of government agencies in 2022 had a ‘no-pay’ cyber warfare ransom policy.
Meanwhile, only 34% of healthcare organizations had a ‘no-pay’ policy.
Another 23% will pay a ransom if a customer’s data is at risk, while 19% always pay.
|Policy Regarding Paying Ransom||Share of Percentage|
|“Pay if customer data is at risk”||23%|
13. In 2022, the healthcare sector saw an increase of 74% in cyber warfare attacks.
This represented an average of 1,463 attacks per week per healthcare organization.
|Industry||Percentage Increase||Average Attacks per Week|
Cyber Warfare Attack Statistics by Region
14. In April 2022, the Russian ransomware group Conti leaked 97% of the data it stole from the Costa Rican government.
The group stole 672GB of data from the Costa Rican government, demanding $10 million in ransom payment. The government refused to pay, which ended in it declaring a state of emergency on May 8th.
15. In 2022, 53% of organizations in the APJ (Australia, Japan, Singapore) region experienced one or more cyber warfare breaches.
Meanwhile, 58% and 73% of those in the EMEA and the US region experienced one or more cyber warfare breaches, respectively.
16. The US experienced the most increased cyber warfare threat activity at 45%.
In 2022, the EMEA and APJ regions saw 25% and 36% increased threat activities, respectively.
17. 88% of employees in the United States in 2022 expressed confidence in their organization’s preparedness against cyber warfare attacks.
Meanwhile, only 76% and 78% of employees in the EMEA and APJ regions thought the same of their organizations.
18. In 2022, 90% of employees in the US knew who to contact if they noticed suspicious cyber warfare activity.
In comparison, only 82% of those in the EMEA and APJ regions had such knowledge.
19. Russia increased cyber warfare attacks against Ukraine by 250% in 2022 compared to 2020.
Meanwhile, Russia’s targeting of users in NATO countries grew by over 300% within the same timeframe.
20. 35.1% of Ukraine cyberwarfare attacks in 2022 were to gov.ua domains.
The majority of these targets comprised Ukrainian military and government agencies.
|Targeted Domains||Percentage of Attacks|
|.mil.gov.ua & military-related||13.8%|
Impacts of Cyber Warfare Statistics
21. The CommonSpirit Health ransomware attack in October 2022 affected 20 million Americans across 21 states.
The CommonSpirit Health system supported 142 hospitals and 2,200 care sites.
Its compromise meant caregivers had to deliver medical care without patient records.
Cyber Warfare Statistics & Trends
22. Cyber warfare threat actors moved from espionage and surveillance to the kinetic application of cyber warfare tools.
In February 2021, a hacker tried to poison the water supply of a small US city in Florida using remote access.
23. Organizations are changing their culture towards cybersecurity in response to the threat of cyber warfare.
74% of security professionals in charge of OT (Operational Technology) infrastructure reveal that executive boards of directors are responding to the risk of cyber warfare through increased cyber security activities.
24. There’s a chance state-developed cyber warfare weapons may end up on the darknet soon.
In May 2022, Interpol’s Secretary General, Jurgen Stock, raised concerns that state-issued cyber warfare weapons may end up in the hands of organized crime groups in the next few years.
25. Cybersecurity spending is steadily rising within organizations from the threat of cyber warfare.
37% of organizations in 2022 planned on increasing investments in cybersecurity, while 41% believed it was highly likely their organization would increase cybersecurity investments in the future.
Protection Against Cyber Warfare Threats
These cyber warfare statistics reveal that cyber warfare security threats had the most significant rise in 2022, with attacks jumping 28% in Q3. Unfortunately, most organizations and countries are yet to take the threat of cyber warfare seriously, with quite a few being unprepared.