Businesses are getting serious about protecting their data from cybersecurity threats these days and for good reason. With a new generation of skilled cybercriminals, it takes a lot more than a default firewall to protect valuable data that could be harmful in the wrong hands. Here are some of the ways to identify and protect against these threats.
The Growing Cybersecurity Threat
To defend against the growing threat of cybersecurity breaches, a business first needs to know what kind of threats will be leveled at them. This will ensure that they are able to take the correct precautions in keeping these threats from compromising their data.
A Distributed Denial of Service attack is a type of cybersecurity threat that can take a business’ website down very quickly. It does this by overwhelming the servers with a deluge of requests that simply can’t be handled and will crash the site.
The worst thing about this kind of attack is that it is done via a script, so no real hacking is required. It also attacks from many different sources, most of which aren’t even aware that their computer is being used for nefarious purposes.
This insidious attack takes advantage of the carelessness of human nature. The one using the phishing scheme will email or text an employee at a business and include a link. If the person clicks the link, then they may have just compromised the entire business network.
Even worse is when the phishing link asks for a password and the employee unknowingly gives it up. Also, keep in mind that an employee could knowingly betray their employer by intentionally giving up this info to a phisher.
You are mistaken if you believe that the emails you send and receive are encrypted. Because everyone would need to know how to open the encrypted email, the most popular email platforms, such as Outlook, Google, and Yahoo, do not automatically encrypt emails.
Depending on the encryption method employed, there are various ways to open an encrypted email. Both types of message encryption methods will require you, as the recipient, to already have a key.
Phishing is just one way that cybercriminals can attempt to get company passwords. Another is through the use of brute force hacking. This is when a program attempts to get into a passworded system by trying every combination of characters imaginable. Though this is generally less effective these days, having a weak password can leave a system vulnerable.
Another way that hackers attempt to get passwords is through social engineering. They usually do this by calling the business directly and pretending to be someone they aren’t. The hacker will then pretend that they forgot their password and use psychological trickery to get the person on the other end to give it up.
An Overview of Protecting Your Business
When it comes to keeping a business safe from cybersecurity threats, there is no such thing as being too careful. First, they need to assess all the avenues through which bad actors could get access to sensitive data. This could be through direct cyberattacks, exploiting disgruntled employees, or through directly accessing computers at the business.
Once the avenues of attack have been figured out, a business can then create countermeasures. This includes objectives such as creating stronger passwords, investing in better firewall protection, upgrading their software regularly, and doing cybersecurity audits at the appropriate times.
Keep in mind that these steps will help a business to create a strong deterrent for hackers so they will hopefully leave to find easier targets.
Key Cybersecurity Tips
Knowing exactly what to do once a business has evaluated its cybersecurity situation is the final key to creating a layer of protection that no hacker can get passed. If done right, chances are the hackers won’t even want to waste time trying. Here are a few tips that can help a business reach this level of cybersecurity.
Updating the Firewall Regularly
A firewall is a very simple concept in that it works to keep the bad guys out of a business network. They are very good at stopping direct attacks most of the time but must be updated regularly. The reason for this is that cybercriminals are always refining their techniques which means that a firewall must also evolve to stop them
Getting Anti-Virus Software
To stop viruses in their tracks a business will need more than just a firewall. One option is to install powerful antivirus software.
This will help to stop threats that manage to get past the firewall, such as ones that get in via phishing or through a corrupted download. Like firewalls, this software must be updated regularly to detect the latest forms of viruses.
Protecting Data with Encryption
If data exists at a business that is extra sensitive, then it should be protected via encryption. This means that even if a cybercriminal gets access to it, they won’t be able to use it because it will be encrypted. This is one of the best ways to prevent data from falling into the wrong hands.
Since the human factor can be responsible for so many cybersecurity problems, a business should give its employees the correct training to ensure that they don’t make a mistake and accidentally let an intruder onto the network. This means teaching them to change their passwords regularly, not to click suspicious links, and to be careful what they download.
What to Do in the Event of a Breach
If there is a cybersecurity breach at a business, several things need to happen as quickly as possible. First, the business must verify what data was accessed and plan accordingly. This could mean speaking to a lawyer if customer data were leaked since the situation will quickly become a legal one.
It is also important to identify the source of the attack, how it got into the network, and how to prevent it from happening again. The entire network should also be swept to make sure that there are no compromised machines on it and that any traces of the attack are all purged from the system so they can’t cause more harm.
Once the data has been compiled and the incident report has been created, it is important to create stronger defenses for the business network. This is because if a network was hacked once, it stands a greater chance of being hacked again since word will get around that it is an easy target.
If you enjoyed reading this blog post and want to learn more, you should check out this article that explains the ways Artificial Intelligence affects Cybersecurity.
Since cybersecurity is a complex topic, it only makes sense for one to arm themselves with knowledge. That being the case, here are some additional resources that will help businesses to protect their networks and databases.
Cybersecurity Training Course – https://www.sans.org/
Cybersecurity Books – https://www.softwaretestinghelp.com/cyber-security-books/
Cybersecurity Publications – https://onlinedegrees.sandiego.edu/top-cyber-security-blogs-websites/
Cybersecurity Service Directory – https://infosecindex.com/
Another option is to hire a cybersecurity professional or a managed IT services company, a great example of one would be MyTek, to help give you peace of mind.
Keeping Businesses Protected from Cybersecurity Threats
The very first step in stopping a cybersecurity threat is to realize just how great the danger really is. Businesses are big targets these days since they collect so much valuable data.
This data can be used for a variety of nefarious plots that can harm the business and its customers. This makes it incredibly important to take cybersecurity seriously and create defenses that can stop attacks.