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Enhancing Cybersecurity: Protecting Your Digital World

27 October, 2020

In today’s interconnected world, being vigilant about cybersecurity is crucial. The average person now has access to multiple internet-connected devices, and billions of devices worldwide are connected to the internet. While this connectivity brings numerous benefits, it also presents an opportunity for hackers to exploit vulnerabilities. Unfortunately, many businesses have not updated their security protocols to match the evolving threat landscape. In this article, we will explore seven reasons why technology is now more dangerous than ever before and discuss the importance of prioritizing cybersecurity.

October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, a timely reminder to focus on cybersecurity. Throughout the month, CISA and its partners are sharing valuable tips and tricks. Join us on Facebook and LinkedIn to stay informed.

Understanding Ransomware: Don’t be a Victim

The concept of computer viruses dates back to the 1970s, when early viruses would replicate on hard drives, occupying system space. However, modern viruses have become significantly more menacing. The most dangerous type, ransomware, encrypts all data on the hard drive, including servers connected to a network. If your data backups are also within reach of the ransomware, you may lose access to clean backup copies. Retrieving the encrypted data typically involves paying a ransom (though not recommended) or working with an IT company to restore the data or decrypt the files. In either case, substantial financial and time investments are required to regain control of your valuable data.

Combatting Phishing Attacks: Stay Informed

Phishing attacks have evolved from the obvious “Nigerian prince” scams of the past. Today, perpetrators conduct extensive research, often impersonating a company executive and requesting discreet money transfers or sensitive financial information. Without scrutinizing the email address (which is often subtly altered), employees may unknowingly transfer large sums to unauthorized accounts, believing they are complying with a legitimate request from their CEO. These honest mistakes cost companies hundreds of thousands of dollars annually, with limited recourse for recovering the funds. In fact, experts estimate that employee mistakes contribute to nearly 92% of breaches.

Insider Threats and Remote Work Challenges

The recent surge in remote work has increased the risk of insider threats, where disgruntled employees, with greater freedom over their data access, may steal or misuse sensitive information. While trust is crucial, a single disgruntled employee storing customer data and joining a competitor could wreak havoc on your business. Implementing virtual office solutions can mitigate these risks by enabling you to maintain tight control over your data and ensure it remains secure.

Addressing Data Leaks and Password Practices

Data leaks can arise from both malicious insiders and major password breaches, which are frequently reported. Although a LinkedIn password breach may seem insignificant, approximately 53% of people admit to reusing passwords across multiple accounts. Hackers exploit this vulnerability by selling passwords or using them to gain access to more critical targets, such as banking institutions. Our recommendations include using complex and unique passwords, employing a password vault for managing passwords, and implementing two-factor authentication whenever possible.

Understanding Cryptojacking: The Silent Threat

Cryptocurrency has become a favorite payment method for hackers due to its untraceable nature and high value. In addition to demanding cryptocurrency as ransom, hackers can secretly exploit systems to mine cryptocurrency without the user’s knowledge. This occurs through malicious email links or malvertising, where advertising carries nefarious code. Users may notice a slight decrease in system performance but remain unaware that their resources are being used for cryptocurrency mining. Some codes can even spread across networks, enabling hackers to maximize their financial gain by utilizing someone else’s resources.

Securing IoT Devices: Protecting Your Connected World

The proliferation of internet-connected devices, particularly in homes, presents hackers with new entry points to invade our lives. They can exploit vulnerabilities in connected camera systems or baby monitors, compromise the performance of household appliances or vehicles, or even communicate unexpectedly through smart devices. While IoT devices can be safe, it is essential to implement robust security measures to mitigate risks effectively.

Keeping Pace with Hacker Advancements

The greatest advantage hackers possess is their ability to continuously advance their tactics and techniques, while many individuals and businesses struggle to keep up. Relying solely on internal IT or managed service providers without specialized security expertise may leave your organization vulnerable. Implementing measures such as phishing tests, employee education, dark web scanning, hosted backup solutions, crisis planning, multi-factor authentication, and professional-grade permission controls for administrative privileges are essential for maintaining a high level of security. If you have doubts about your current IT solution’s security capabilities, reach out to us for expert guidance.

Protecting your digital world requires a proactive and comprehensive approach to cybersecurity. Don’t wait for a breach to occur. Prioritize cybersecurity now to safeguard your business and ensure a secure digital environment for everyone.

27 October, 2020