With Cybercrime On The Rise, How Can You Protect Your Chicago Organization?

With Cybercrime On The Rise, How Can You Protect Your Chicago Organization?

How vulnerable is your organization to a cyberattack? With the number of cyberattacks continually on the rise, it's no longer a matter of if your organization will be targeted, but when. According to Accenture’s study, over the past five years, security breaches have increased by 65%.1 These attacks have had devastating effects on a company, such as disruption of business, a damaged business reputation leading to loss of clients, decreased sales and profits, and lawsuits.

The cybercrime industry is an enormous industry that is consistently growing, making every other industry to rethink their cybersecurity. Cybercriminals are becoming more systematic and developing even more sophisticated ways of getting access to sensitive data. Highly driven by the enormous amount of money they would get selling sensitive corporate data and the anonymity that these selling platforms provide, cybercriminals are devoted to investing their money and time in ripping off companies.

A cyberattack can cost you millions in downtime and lost productivity.2 So how exactly do you ensure that your company's network is protected?

What Are The Most Common Forms Of Cyberattacks?

The most significant types of security threats are malware attacks and phishing.

  1. Malware: Malware refers to malicious software designed to cause extensive damage to systems and data, get unauthorized access, and block owners' access to networks. Malware is typically delivered via a file or a link that needs to be clicked to activate the malware. According to a report by AV-TEST, four new malwares are developed every second.3
  2. Phishing: Phishing is a type of social engineering where the target is contacted via a text message, telephone call, or email. It's commonly carried out using emails. Phishing is usually carried by someone posing as a verified institution, or a person of power who's aim is to lure targets into providing their sensitive information. According to the SANS Institute, 95% of all cyberattacks on company networks are due to successful spear phishing.4

Most small businesses believe that cybercriminals only target large corporations. However, recent reports have shown that SMBs are also increasingly becoming targets of cybercrime. This is because they act as keepers of sensitive data and often act as gateways for larger corporations. They also lack the sophisticated cybersecurity infrastructure that larger firms have. According to PTG, 43% of cyberattacks are directed towards small businesses, and each attack costs an average of $200,000 to recover from.5

It is far less expensive to prevent cyberattacks than it is to recover from one. Cyberattacks may take weeks, months, or even years to recover from fully. With hackers continually coming up with new sophisticated methods to get access to your data, you need to implement cybersecurity controls to prevent these attacks.

How Can You Protect Your Organization Against Cyberattacks?

The following are six cybersecurity measures that you should implement to protect your business from cyberattacks:

  1. Installation Of Security Software: Installing security software such as antivirus programs will help detect and remove malicious programs. These programs should be installed on your computers and regularly updated.
  2. Implementation Of Strong User Authentication Processes: Use complex passwords that include symbols, letters, special characters, and numbers. Additionally, you may implement two-factor and multi-factor authentication and biometric authentication to lock out malicious actors from having access to your data and systems.
  3. Secure Mobile Devices: Due to their portability, mobile devices may carry valuable company data. For this reason, they are at a higher risk of getting stolen or lost. Protecting these mobile devices entails password protection, encryption, and activating of the 'remote wiping' option.
  4. Adopt Cloud-Based Computing Solutions: Cloud-based security consists of technologies and procedures that work together to safeguard cloud-based systems and data. These security controls are configured to protect cloud data, ensure compliance, and protect clients' privacy.
  5. Implement A Firewall: A firewall is a network security device that monitors incoming and outgoing network traffic and blocks data packets based on security rules. Using a firewall helps you establish a barrier between your internal network and incoming traffic from external sources to stop malicious actors from getting access to your data.
  6. Implement Cybersecurity Awareness Training: Employees are usually the main targets when it comes to cyberattacks. Cybersecurity awareness training increases their security awareness levels and gives them the practical skills needed to protect your organization from cyberattacks.

Your IT infrastructure is critical in your day-to-day business operations. It's vital to ensure that it is adequately protected against cyberattacks.

About LeadingIT

LeadingIT offers 24/7, all-inclusive, fast, and friendly technology and cybersecurity support for nonprofits, manufacturers, schools, accounting firms, religious organizations, government, and law offices with 10-200 employees across the Chicagoland area.

--

Sources:

1https://www.accenture.com/us-en/insights/security/cost-cybercrime-study

2https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbestechcouncil/2019/12/02/what-is-the-cost-of-a-data-breach/?sh=5735a5329e78

3https://www.av-test.org/en/statistics/malware/

4https://www.keepnetlabs.com/phishing-statistics-you-need-to-know-to-protect-your-organization/

5https://blog.goptg.com/small-businesses-cyberattacks-2020

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2020/11/how-to-protect-companies-from-cybercrime/

https://home.sophos.com/en-us/security-news/2019/cybercrime.aspx

https://www.mavon.com/are-cyber-criminals-becoming-more-sophisticated/

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2019/03/here-are-the-biggest-cybercrime-trends-of-2019/

https://www.forcepoint.com/cyber-edu/malware.