Russian-backed hackers take less than 19 minutes to move within a network that they have compromised, enabling them to achieve their objectives way faster than other state-sponsored groups, according to a new report from US-based cyber-security firm CrowdStrike.
Hacker groups linked to North Korea emerged as the second-fastest who generally take two hours and 20 minutes for the "breakout time", showed the findings released on Tuesday.
"Nation-state adversaries were continuously active throughout 2018 - targeting dissidents, regional adversaries and foreign powers to collect intelligence for decision-makers," the report said.
For the study, the researchers at CrowdStrike compared the breakout time of hacker groups backed by four nation-states - Russia, China, Iran, and North Korea - and organised criminal groups. The study excluded US-sponsored groups.
The results showed that Chinese-backed groups were the next fastest, with hackers from that country accessing another part of a network about four hours after having initially compromised it, The Hill reported.
Hacker groups linked to Iran on an average take five hours and nine minutes to enter and move within the victim's network, while organised criminal groups take much longer - nine hours and 42 minutes, the study showed.
"Speed is essential in cyber-security - for both offence and defence," the report stated.
The faster the hacker groups can infiltrate the system, better becomes their chance of not getting caught.