Digital disruption has become the need of the hour with almost every other business jumping into the bandwagon of acing the digital race. To adapt to modern high tech solutions such as relying on computer’s predictive intelligence and storing confidential data on servers exposes a company to a high risk of security breach and malware infections. It’s almost every day that news of a cyber-attack breaks loose while risking using millions of users, employees, and stakeholders altogether.
The digital age and thefts associated with them
In recent times, the Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack on the top social media network – Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram left many users and stakeholders uncertain about the company’s integrity and capability to protect their users against a perilous attack of this great measure. In fact 2013 was the worst year for Adobe when their massive Information centers fell prey at the hands of hackers who jeopardized the personal information of almost 2.9 million users. Attackers accessed almost 150 million accounts of which 38 million were 38 million active users. Not just this adobe had almost 40 GB of source code that was stolen and amongst this was the entire source code of ColdFusion suspecting the company to losses of almost 90 million US dollars that year. Further in a survey conducted recently, it was found out that more than 60 million Americans are affected by identity theft each year increasing up to 33 billion records that will be accessed by cybercriminals by 2023.
Whether you are affiliated with an established enterprise or are starting off your own venture with a goal to surpass records at being successful, Cybersecurity can be a grave bottleneck for your business growth that needs to be addressed with urgency. To win the battle against cybercrime, it is essential to understand the nature of threats and preventive techniques one might use to combat them.
Why is my business at risk?
A cyberattack is a purposeful endeavor by an individual or association to breach the data and information of a business often damaging the reputation in three main ways: financial,legal and of course the business reputational.
While cyber-attacks at big names for example, Facebook and Adobe, stand out as truly newsworthy, independent ventures and small scale enterprises face such threats without any public acknowledgment. Stephen Cobb, a senior security scientist at ESET, said that private ventures fall into cybersecurity criminals’ sweet spot: “The odds on small scale enterprises are greater compared to larger organizations.”
Small scale Enterprises are engaging targets since hackers are aware that these organizations are less cautious about security. As indicated by Towergate Insurance, Small scale Enterprises regularly think little of their hazard level, with 82 percent of entrepreneurs saying they’re not focused on cyber-attack, since they don’t have anything worth taking. This is quite misleading since they are not aware of how their codes, private communications, financials are all under serious threat.
Common types of attacks
Imagine this, you are casually scrolling one day and you receive a phishing link in the form of a pop-up requesting permission for launching cookies or accessing files randomly as often masked as malware which include spyware, ransomware, worms or viruses. These malwares breach a network through a specific link, email or an attachment when a user accesses a risky software.
Malwares enable the attacker to block off key components of the network and install further malware to harm the device and extract confidential data out of the device. Another type includes Distributed Denial of Service attack (DDoS) where online servers and systems are flooded which exhausts the resources and bandwidth, disabling the capability to launch requests of the server.
Man In the Middle attack is launched through two- party transaction enabling the attacker to interrupt the incoming traffic and steal the user data – this type of attack is most susceptible to occur if an unprotected device is connected to a public WiFi.
Reducing the odds of a cyber-attack – protecting business and devices in concern
Here is a guide for all the security measures you can take to build stronger defense systems and mitigate risks associated with cyber threats for your business:
- Protection against Ransomware
Storing data on cloud and servers often is not the best malware protection technique. Often, most businesses refer to using a third party protection which often includes installing Anti-viruses, Anti-Spyware. These have well-constructed firewall protection and Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) which helps monitor sites and device connections for a potential threat.
Monitoring solutions such as Panpota, offer solutions to give clients complete network observability. Coupled with the aforementioned software, loopholes in network security and risks are identified, ensuring a rapid cleanse of the device against all potential threats.
However, since malwares are constantly developing a frequent software update is most recommended for using this method as an adequate protection.
- Data Management and Data Protection
Business dealings often include valuable and sensitive exchange of data which could be quite crucial for business dealings if necessary measures for data protection are not put into action. According to a recent survey, data breaches often occur through unprotected devices and weak passwords which can be easily accessed. Using Two Factor Authentication (2FA) adds an additional level of security making it harder for hackers to gain access to the data making authentication process more secure.
Another secure method is by the use of burner email, set up as a dummy email account for communication outside the company safe and secure. Using the application I have been Pawned enables users to identify and pin down the source of data breach.
- Protection against unsecure connections
Synonymous to business transactions, web surfing often requires exchange of data between the user and server. This exchange is often susceptible to a Man In the Middle attack launched by cyber criminals. Users connected through a public wifi have greater odds of falling prey to such attacks. Using a Virtual Private Network enables the user by providing a protective tunnel and encrypting the information exchange.
Choosing the right VPN for your business is essential since VPN scams are common. Often hackers creep into VPNs with low security networks making the user more likely to be attacked. Many VPN services for this reason provide their users with an extremely secure network, having dedicated IP addresses with strong two factor verification to protect what is yours.
Moreover VPN services provide the option of remote IPs, in which employees which are unable to have access to workspace can download and communicate the same way an employee would communicate if present at the office. This also leverages the employees and saves a lot of capital that would have been spent on the transportation of the employees along with enabling them to have 24/7 access to sensitive information while the confidentiality is safeguarded.
The Bottom Line
Concluding it off, as the saying goes “Keep your friends close but your enemies closer” is quite relevant when it comes to protecting your business. With the aid of proper monitoring, evaluation and adequate protective measures it is only possible to safeguard your business if nor a hundred percent then enough protection that can control the damage to a great extent.