Is Your Business Prepared For The Latest Cybersecurity Threats?

Despite various measures being taken, cybercrimes not only continue to occur but are rising at an alarming rate, with associated costs expected to grow at a rate of 15% a year over the next five years.

By that calculation, the costs in the year 2025 will be at $10.5 trillion. Small businesses are particularly vulnerable; it’s estimated that one in five will be hit by a cyberattack and that 60% of those businesses will close down as a result.

The mission of cybersecurity is to stay ahead of threats rather than dealing with them after they happen, but it’s not easy, as attackers grow smarter by the day.

2021 will come with a whole new level of cybersecurity threats.

Here are the main ones to look out for.

1. Phishing and SMS-Based Phishing

Phishing is an email attack and one of the most common cybersecurity threats in business today. A hacker, using a false identity, attempts to trick the email recipient into disclosing confidential information or downloading malware.

(SMS-based phishing—aka, “Smishing”—is similar but the attack comes through text messages.) In today’s offices, hundreds of emails and electronic messages are exchanged every day, and it only takes one employee click on a malicious link to lead to a company-wide breach.

How to prepare:

As a business owner, it’s vital to train your employees to be cautious about clicking links or giving sensitive information, even if the sender appears legitimate.

2. PDF Scams

PDF scams are similar to phishing but come with malevolent attachments instead of links. Often, these emails include a message that the attached PDF is an important account statement or security update. When clicked, however, it downloads malware onto the system.

How to prepare:

Like phishing, train your employees to watch out for unusual email addresses and generic language, such as like “Dear Customer, “Dear Sir,” or “Dear Madam.” Also, make sure your company’s network and computers have the most updated virus protections.

3. Ransomware

Ransomware is cyber-extortion, when an attacker encrypts the data on your system and demands a payment in order for you to regain access to your system and data. Making matters worse, cybercrime groups often steal the data before encrypting it, which can lead to host of other security headaches.

How to prepare:

It’s vital that you keep your company’s software and hardware updated. You should also remove old software (aka legacy apps), which are a security risk. To learn more about preparing against ransomware, download our white paper.

4. Credential Stuffing

This is when attackers take a large list of usernames/passwords (usually from a corporate breach) and plug those login credentials into other digital services. With more businesses taking their operations online, credential stuffing is expected to be a major cybersecurity threat in 2021.

How to prepare:

Implement two-factor authentication for account logins at your office (i.e., their username/password followed by an email or phone verification). And make certain no one shares their passwords with other employees.

5. Database Exposure

This is exactly what it sounds like: it’s a security breach that exposes your data—such as customer contact details, sensitive employee info, or company financial records—to a hack or theft. With most companies hosting their data on external servers, this is expected to be a growing cybercriminal threat this year.

How to prepare:

Keep any physical hardware holding your data in a secure and locked room and be sure you have both a database firewall and web application firewall. You should also encrypt all data on your server and keep a backup.

In a business world connected by the internet, the need for quality cybersecurity is vital. So is the need to have a high-speed internet solution and the bandwidth to handle increased online traffic.

Contact us today to learn more about our full suite of communications products and services, built to help your organization operate more efficiently and productively.