Your organization’s cyber security now dominates your list of business concerns. Almost everyone in the world now has access to internet-connected devices – and along with the ability to use the internet, there should at the very least be a basic understanding of cyber security, what risks there are to your systems, and how you can protect them. Among your business concerns, cyber security should have even surpassed the physical security of your organization.
As our workplaces become more saturated with web-connected devices, criminals are taking advantage of the unfamiliarity many have with them, as well as the anonymity they can achieve from a cyber attack. We often become victims of attacks through no fault of our own, and often through indirect means – either by becoming collateral damage in a cyber attack on a larger company, or by becoming one of the hundreds – or potentially thousands – of victims affected by an attack launched publicly.
Irrespective of how many internet-connected devices you own, whether one or one hundred, the main reason people become victims is due to a lack of knowledge. People just open the box and start surfing without a plan in place.
Many businesses do not comprehend how critical cyber security is. Let’s make the message relatable to everyone. At the end of each day, you verify that all doors and windows are locked, and that the alarm system is ready in case of a break-in attempt. You should do the same for your cyber landscape – you don’t have to check it every day, but you understand the premise. Your cyber security may arguably trump your physical security in some cases since a digital threat is higher than a physical threat.
There is a risk for every business! Cyber security is essential no matter what industry your business is in – with this being said, it can cause apprehension, both in knowing what tools to implement to ensure the most secure environment possible and in regards to how much it will cost. It can be even more challenging as time goes on when owners get increasingly eager to get things going, a combination that doesn’t usually work.
You may think that improving the cyber security of your organization is expensive and complex. A good cyber risk strategy can be broken down into three main areas; protection, people, and process. Addressing these three core requirements will not only provide you with an affordable and flexible means of defending yourself, but also ensure that you remain compliant with applicable laws.
The Methods of Cyber Attack
Malware is a file or piece of code designed to attack and undermine an application or a computer system. There are many ways in which it can infect a network, but email attachments are the most common.
One of the most common forms of Malware is Ransomware, which locks and encrypts your data. Cyber criminals will then demand a ransom under the promise that they will return your access safely. As an attempt to force you to pay the ransom, they set time limits on payments and threaten to delete the files if they aren’t paid within the specified timeframe.
‘The cost of losing my data would be much higher anyway, so I’ll just pay them, right?’ Yes, you are right, but are you really trusting them? Would access be restored just because they promised it? Probably not! If you pay, you are simply letting the criminals know that you have the funds to pay them again, and that you are willing to do so.
Cyber criminals use phishing attacks to obtain private information by impersonating a legitimate identity in fake/fraudulent emails.
It is the malicious links contained in phishing emails that make the cyber criminal’s attack successful. Cyber criminals pose as trusted sources to their victims, such as banks. In addition, their message will also have a sense of time sensitivity (like a Ransomware attack), in an attempt to force the recipient to act quickly and just on a whim, in the hopes that the recipient hasn’t had time to think or confirm the authenticity of the message. An attack would be facilitated if the recipient clicked a link and gave over the details.
Smishing scams are similar to Phishing scams except that they take place via SMS messaging, where many are more relaxed about the possibility of a cyber attack.
There are many types of cyber criminality that threaten your business in the modern era – but, these are the most common. If you don’t stop them at the first opportunity, it could spell disaster and the end of your organization.
The next article will explore the various cyber security fundamentals that can give your business the best chance of defending itself against cyber threats.
The Right IT Support
With over 25 years of experience, Office Automation Technologies Inc is a leading provider of state-of-the-art IT support and services. We work hard to manage and support our clients’ IT infrastructures and related requirements so they can focus on their businesses, get ahead of the competition and drive revenues. Contact us now and talk to one of our experts.