Simply described, a cyberattack is a type of intrusion that involves the use of computers to gain access to other computers. A simple “brute force” attempt, in which a criminal tries all possible passwords, to complex attempts that use stolen credentials and malware to steal data and shut down networks.
However, these representations oversimplify the problem because cyberattacks and attackers, as well as their tools, are always developing which is how common type cyber attacks are evolving. As a result, managed IT companies like JENLOR are increasingly collaborating with partners to integrate and innovate cyberattack defenses.
Common Types Of Cyber Attacks
There are various types of attackers: Money is the most common motivation for cybercriminals (accounting for more than two-thirds of attacks, according to the Verizon 2021 Data Breach Incident Report), but corporate espionage and state-sponsored hacking are also factors.
Cyberattack types also vary greatly depending on the attacker, the target, and the tactics used, with business risks falling into four broad categories:
- Ransomware and Malware: Cybercriminals have discovered that breaking into networks, encrypting them, and demanding payment in exchange for the decryption key to reclaim control is profitable. According to IDC, one-third of enterprises globally were targeted in 2021, many of them multiple times, with the average ransom estimated at around $250,000 per attack.
- Denial of Service (DoS):State-sponsored actors and cyberterrorists frequently deploy this form of cyberattack, as do ransomware gangs. It entails taking a network down or conducting a distributed denial of service (DDoS) assault that accomplishes the same goal – shutting down access by flooding a network with malicious traffic and overloading its capacity.
- Theft of Data:One of the first sorts of cyberattacks was data theft, in which hackers stole credit card numbers and personal information. However, like most types of cyberattacks, data breaches have grown in magnitude and sophistication. Bad actors can get data in a variety of methods, both old and modern. Phishing scams entice people to give over their passwords so they can gain access to corporate networks. Credit card data is harvested via skimming devices installed at point-of-sale terminals. Data can also be obtained from carelessly destroyed documents or from a bad guy impersonating a third party during a phone call. These are just a couple ways of how common type cyber attacks are evolving.
- Impersonation:This category includes a wide range of phishing schemes, from the simple “claim your prize” email containing malware to sophisticated “social engineering,” in which a person is persuaded to undertake a damaging activity by receiving an urgent email purporting to be from a client, colleague, or vendor. “Whale phishing” and “spear phishing” attacks use online or stolen information about executives to dupe staff or partners into doing the cybercriminal’s bidding.
How To Reduce The Risk Of Cyber Attacks
With the growing possibility of hackers abusing your data, the most responsible course of action, after having appropriate professional data breach insurance, is to develop systems to prevent data security breaches.
- Reduce Data Transfers: Because of the growing number of employees who work remotely, data must frequently be transferred between company and personal devices. Keeping sensitive information on personal devices makes you more vulnerable to cyber threats.
- Download Carefully: Downloading files from unknown sources can put your systems and devices at danger of being hacked. To reduce your device’s vulnerability to malware, only download files from trusted sources and prevent superfluous downloads.
- Improve Password Security: The first line of security against a number of threats is password strength. Using meaningless symbols, changing your passwords on a regular basis, and never writing them down or distributing them are all important steps in protecting your sensitive data.
- Monitor for Data Leaks: Regularly monitoring your data and spotting current leaks can help you avoid the long-term consequences of data leakage. Data breach monitoring software keeps an eye on questionable activities and alerts you when it happens.
- Develop a Data Breach Response Plan: Data breaches can happen to even the most careful and disciplined companies. Establishing a formal plan to manage potential data breach incidents, primary cyber attack response plan, and cyber attack recovery plan will help organizations of any size respond to actual attacks and contain their potential damage.
Businesses are clearly under constant threat from cybercrime and must take precautions to protect their data. Don’t wait until it’s too late; take action now to avoid future data breaches and the consequences that come with them. Similar to the importance of adequate cyber liability insurance, adequate data protection is critical. Contact JENLOR today to begin taking proactive steps to better position your organization against the ever-evolving landscapes of cyber attacks.
Cybersecurity Lessons in Big Retail
What can SMB’s learn from high-profile security breaches in large retail businesses? These cybersecurity lessons in retail can help prevent a security breach from occurring in your big retail business.
IT Retail Security Gaps
Retail IT security has traditionally been reactive and underfunded. From a technological standpoint, retailers have always approached PCI (Payment Card Industry) compliance as a checkbox exercise. Compliant security has resulted in insufficient data protection and poorly integrated point-of-sale solutions that are dispersed across a large geographic area. Furthermore, due to deployment, maintenance, and training problems, endpoint security on point-of-sale systems is frequently overlooked. Retailers are hampered in mitigating security threats due to a lack of staffing and competing objectives, leaving many retailers to delegate important security duties to auditors, contractors, and stores.
Another common hacker tactic is refund fraud. What is the mechanism behind it? There are several choices, including:
A hacker makes a bogus receipt, which means you give them a refund for something they didn’t buy. On the dark web, some fraudulent receipts are for sale.
Someone purchases something with stolen credit card information and then requests a refund to be sent to a different card.
Someone makes it appear as if their package never arrived, leading you to issue a refund. If a person complains about your business on social media, this is a good strategy to use. When it happens once or twice, refund fraud may not seem like a big deal. Scammers and hackers, on the other hand, can work at any level, and you could end up losing a lot of money.
Third-Party Security is a Priority
Third-party IT security breaches have affected innumerable organizations, with high-profile breaches at Home Depot and others making national news. Other organizations that have experienced third-party data breaches include Amazon, T-Mobile, eBay, Macy’s, and Target, which demonstrates how prevalent they are in this day and age.
Key Takeaways for ALL organizations – retail or not
A chain is only as strong as its weakest link. Fraudulent actors are creative in the ways they seek to compromise business these days, and the level of access 3rd party vendors have at your organization matters. These are all key pieces of the puzzle when considering how secure you REALLY are. Reach out to JENLOR today to see how the lessons we’ve learned operating in the IT security landscape for over 20 years can benefit you and your organization for cybersecurity lessons in big retail.