Keeping information secure should be a priority for any organisation. However, with the world increasingly interconnected and cyber crime on the rise, this can be a challenge. In order to protect themselves and the data in their care, it’s vital that organisations are aware of the threats they face. Here are five to look out for.
Technology is developing rapidly, and while many organisations are quick to embrace it, they are often less efficient at securing it. Staying up to date with the latest technological advances offers an array of benefits, from convenience to improved business prospects, but new technology comes with new vulnerabilities, offering cyber criminals opportunities for attack. Remember, too, that security risks aren’t just traditional vulnerabilities – giving employees the opportunity to work in new ways could have surprisingly negative impacts on information security.
Outdated software poses a bigger risk than you might expect. It might be tempting to ignore updates and carry on using old systems because they still work and upgrading seems like too much hassle. However, the older your system, the greater the chance that there are vulnerabilities that can be exploited – especially when the software has reached its end of life and the vendor is no longer maintaining support. And it’s not just the criminal hackers you have to worry about. Old software is often incompatible with newer applications, reduces your competitiveness, and puts you at risk of non-compliance with laws and regulations, which could have legal, financial and reputational repercussions.
Supply chain attacks
For your organisation to be secure, you also need to ensure your partners and suppliers are following security best practice. A supply chain attack occurs when your system is infiltrated through a third-party supplier or service provider; these are often targeted because they are the ‘weak link’ and are less secure, offering a cyber criminal an easy route into your organisation. As these vendors generally have access to your systems and to the personal data that your organisation holds, a breach could have serious implications.
Phishing is a type of social engineering attack that targets people through deceptive emails, trying to get them to click malicious links or disclose confidential information. Both the ease of the scam and its long-term success have made it popular with attackers – and as their methods have become more sophisticated, their emails have become harder to spot. While software can help stem the flow, no spam filter is 100% effective and malicious emails will slip through – ultimately leaving it up to your employees to make the final call.
Malware is designed to infiltrate and damage computer systems, and takes many different forms, from worms to Trojans to ransomware. Although the extent of the damage will depend on the type of malware, the device or network that is infected and what data is stored on it, the consequences of a successful attack can be severe, resulting in the shutdown of an organisation’s systems, the loss of critical data, and/or significant financial and reputational damage.
With the threat landscape constantly evolving, it’s crucial that organisations take steps to secure their information. Vigilant Software’s CyberComply platform offers a way for organisations to manage all their cyber security and data privacy obligations in one powerful, Cloud-based tool. The platform will guide you through cyber risk and privacy management monitoring and compliance, helping you manage your cyber defences to guard against current and emerging risks, and maintaining and accelerating your compliance with laws, regulations, standards and contractual obligations.