Cybercrimes and hackers can do a lot of damage to your businesses if you don’t employ proper precautions and countermeasures. Fortunately, there are many ways to ensure these cyber threats won’t penetrate your defenses and access critical information. This article will teach you the secrets and steps to protect your business from cyber threats.
What is a Cyber Threat?
Cyber Threats are unauthorized systems trying to access a critical database. Individuals who engage in these activities are known as hackers. Cyber threats attempt to bypass secure OT environments and exploit vulnerabilities. They’ll conduct their cyber-attack once they’ve found the perfect attack point.
Cyber attacks manifest as active sabotage and theft of critical assets and data, among other harm.
Types of Cyber Threats
Your OT cybersecurity environment is vulnerable to various cyber threats that can cause significant harm to your business. Here are some of the types of Cyber threats that you need to become aware of:
1. Malware and Trojans
Malware attacks are the most ubiquitous cyber threats as they are malicious software that contains worms and spyware that can damage your system. Trojans work similarly but are harder to detect since they are malicious software disguising themselves as legitimate apps.
Regardless, both can whisk away your company data without your knowledge.
2. Phishing Attempts
Another well-known type of cyber threat is phishing attempts. Phishing is a social engineering attack where hackers pose as a trusted contact to bypass OT security networks. Victims who fall for this trick will open the email and open the file or link attached to it. Hackers will access all their critical information and essential credentials by doing so. At the same time, hackers will install malware and spyware inside the victim’s computer system.
3. Denial-of-Service Attacks
The Denial-of-Service attack is one of OT environments’ most dangerous cyber threats. Hackers will target critical servers, systems, and networks to spam them with traffic until they break down. This forces the server or network owners to shut them down for the time being at the cost of not attending to legitimate server requests.
4. Eavesdropping Attack
Also known as the man-in-the-middle attack, hackers will barge into a two-party communication. The hacker will hijack the session between the client and host, where they’re now vulnerable to stealing their data.
5. Password Attack
Password attacks are a method wherein the hacker cracks your password using various password-cracking tools. Once inside your account, they can steal all the valuable data they can find or use it to impersonate or damage someone’s reputation.
Measures to Safeguard Your Business from Cyber Threats
Be aware that just because your business isn’t well-known doesn’t mean hackers will ignore you. Hackers will target anyone and anybody; nobody is safe from their attacks. On the other hand, you can employ various methods to stop these hackers cold in their tracks before they can do anything damaging.
Here are the said methods or practices you can use to safeguard your business:
1. Bring Awareness of the Matter to Your Employees
Not knowing that hackers could attack your business at any point is a recipe for disaster. You will need to educate everyone in your company about the activities of hackers and cybercriminals. By bringing awareness of the matter to your team members, they can start forming measures to counteract cyber-attacks.
2. Implement Advanced and Safe Password Practices
Data breaches and stolen accounts occur because they utilize very weak passwords. Every employee and staff in your business must access critical files and tools in a secure channel. Also, these files and tools need to be encrypted with a very complex password to prevent hacker attacks.
Ensure the password is changed regularly, around every 60 to 90 days.
3. Obtain the Ideal Security Platforms
The effectiveness of your company’s OT cybersecurity systems relies solely on the investments you’ve made in them. If you’ve managed to strike a deal with a reputable cybersecurity firm, you’re all set to keep cyber threats at bay. However, you will need to check the following just to be sure:
- Firewalls. The ideal OT environments would need a firewall to protect their network systems. Aside from that, it is also crucial in protecting your business website.
- The ideal cybersecurity platforms should be PCI-DSS Level 1 compliant. If they are of that level, you won’t need to worry about digital data security breaches, as they’ll handle that.
- Check if the security platform gets regular patches from their agency. A regularly updated security system can keep an eye on the latest threats.
4. Secure all Work-associated Hardware
Data breaches can also be caused by stolen hardware which hackers can use to damage your business. You must store your computers and servers in a safe yet locked-down area. You can accentuate it further by adding security cameras and alarms in your working area to double down on protection for your hardware.
5. Perform Routine Data Backups
No matter how vigilant the OT security system you’re using, data leaks and breaches can still happen suddenly. To keep your assets secure when those happen, you will need to create backups of your data. Here are some of the items you will need to backup since they’re significant to your business:
- Financial reports
- HR files
- Accounts receivables and payables
Make sure to even back these data up in an online drive. Also, you’ll need to check your backup files routinely to see if they’re functional.
Good Security Practices Safeguards your Business from Threats
Hackers are becoming more savvy as each day passes by. Businesses must identify the type of cyber attacks they’re facing to use the suitable countermeasure. Also, companies must educate their employees and keep their assets safe.
By doing everything mentioned here, your business is set to thrive while keeping hackers away.
1. Is stealing a company’s physical assets still counted as cybercrime?
Yes, it is counted as cybercrime because hackers now use the assets to damage their targeted companies. Hackers can also use these assets to impersonate and pose as legitimate entities.
2. Why is it necessary to train employees about cyber threats?
Employees are trained to learn about cyber threats to add the proper security measures to their computers in a working setting. This would prevent hackers and the like from accessing their units and stealing away valuable information.
3. Why change the password every 60-90 days?
The reasoning is to increase the security of logging into these tools or assets. Keeping the same password for a long time can make them vulnerable to hackers.