Cyber Security: It’s Importance to SMBs
Cyber security should – in the modern age – dominate your list of business concerns. If it doesn’t, then things need to change. Internet connected devices dominate our lives. Unlimited internet connectivity has made it essential that we have, at minimum, a beginner’s level of familiarity with the potential risks to your system, and the various methods you can take to lessen those risks. In today’s world, cyber security should take priority over even the physical security of your organisation.
Our workplaces are packed full of devices that are internet reliant. The criminal community has grown wise to the relative ease of a cyber attack and the many opportunities an attack of this kind offers. One main reason cyber criminality is on the rise is the anonymity that is offers – breaking in through a window makes a lot more noise than sneaking access through a Phishing email. Most of the time it is through indirect means that smaller to medium businesses get attacked – they are either very unlucky to become collateral damage off the back of a cyber attack aimed at a much larger business or become one of the thousands of victims hit by an attack launched publicly (that happens every year).
Be it one or one hundred, it is irrelevant how many internet connected devices you have. The number one reason that people become victims of cyber attacks is through lack of knowledge about them and the ways of defining themselves from them. We tend to be impatient – we open the box and get underway with enjoying all of the features it offers rather than starting cautiously by considering the dangers of using it incorrectly.
When the day is finished one of your team check the doors and windows to ensure the safety of the business – it’s a reflex to carry out these checks -, you don’t make a conscious effort to do it because it has become automatic. The necessary actions to protect your systems should also be automatic and a normal part of the working day. We aren’t saying take stock of your cyber security measures every day, but you understand the premise.
All are at risk! Cyber criminals don’t discriminate. With this in mind, you must have good standards of cyber security. Understandably, it can cause apprehension, because some have no knowledge of the tools they need to implement that will give them the best chance of creating a secure cyber landscape, or the cost of such a task.
The Cyber Essentials Accreditation is a good place to start. It not only ensures you are as secure as possible, but also allows you to boast your cyber security ethos to your client base: in today’s world this is a very positive asset to have.
The Methods of Cyber Attack
Malware is a file or piece of code that has been designed specifically to attack the functions of an application or the computer system itself. Malware comes in many variants; however, email attachment (Phishing) attacks are the most common – more on this shortly.
Ransomware is one of the most common forms of Malware and works by locking and encrypting your data. The cyber criminals demand a ransom under the promise that they will safely return your access. Cleverly – to force your hand – they will introduce a sense of urgency into your actions by setting a time scale that payment must be paid by under the threat of deletion of your files.
Understandably many just pay. It is a stressful experience and people just want it over as soon as possible – but do you really want to trust a criminal? You are very unlikely to ever get access back in this scenario. Paying will, in fact, have the opposite effect, as you are just advertising the fact that you are willing and able to pay them when told.
A Phishing attack is when a cyber criminal takes a false identity in fake/fraudulent emails in order to gain access to confidential information.
Phishing Emails carry the malicious links that are key to the cyber criminal’s attack being a success. The cyber criminal will pose as a trusted source to the recipient (a bank, for example). Like Ransomware attacks, they bring a sense of time sensitivity in the content of their message; by doing this they are attempting to force the recipient to make a decision quickly with little forethought (they hope that the recipient hasn’t had time to think logically or to confirm the validity of the source with another member of the team). The recipient would then click the link facilitating the attack, thereby showing the rouse was believed.
Now you know the various ways that cyber criminals attack your system, take a look at our following article and discover what steps you need to follow.
Keeping your technology functional and secure
We recognise the challenges that businesses face daily with their technology – and security is one of the most prominent of them all. Our team of experts will work together with you to find a cyber security strategy that compliments the way you do business. We will also educate your team to be sure that they understand the strategy and are prepared for whatever a cyber criminal can throw at them. With our help you can go into the future confident that your systems are secure. Please don’t hesitate to get in contact with us and find out more.
Tel: 020 7250 3840
124 City Road
Dew Gates The Street