Cybercrime is a serious problem that costs billions of dollars every year. Not only is it continuing to increase, cyber attacks are becoming more customized and sophisticated. Not only that, the list of computer crimes is growing. It currently includes:
- Intellectual property theft: this includes theft of any copyrighted material, trademark violations and theft of trade secrets.
- Phishing scams: hacking a computer and sending multiple emails with the intent to deceive recipients, often into sending money or giving out personal information.
- Circumvention of security systems: interference with security cameras and alarm systems in order to gain illegal entry.
- Spreading viruses: worms and viruses can have a devastating effect on your business’s continuity and cost you monetarily and in lost data.
- Service overload: a Distributed Denial of Service attack (DDoS) attack happens when the system is overloaded with connections and shuts down.
- Ransomware: this is a form of malicious software that can prevent you from accessing your system unless a sum of money is paid to release it. Check out this ransom virus file recovery expert.
Anyone that has a computer can ultimately become a victim of cybercrime and cybercriminals. The culprits often form their own communities designed to increase their skills and hide their identities. If you’re a business owner you need to be very careful, not only to protect your company’s information but also that of your clients.
Computer forensics is one of the newest fields in the forensic repertoire. Experts are called upon to examine hardware and software for clues that can solve a cybercrime and ultimately produce viable evidence for a trial. Fortunately for experts in the field, hitting the delete key doesn’t completely erase data from the hard drive. They can often retrieve data, images and code that are hidden deep within the system. But just how clever are today’s cybercriminals and how can your IT team protect your business?
Protecting Your Business Against Cyber Criminals
- Keep viruses at bay: Make sure that you use a powerful virus blocker and that its database is readily updated so that it can defend your company from even the newest of virus and malware attacks. Make sure your firewall is also resistant to spyware and phishing attacks.
- Strengthening your system: You must make sure that your IT team keeps your operating system updated on a regular basis and that all the necessary patches are in place.
- Update your browsers: Your browsers should always be running the latest version of the software.
- Update your system software: Out-dated system software can make your company vulnerable to cyberattack.
- Encrypt your wireless network: Instruct your IT team to make sure that your current wireless encryption is adequate. If it is not, have them secure it with a more complex code.
- Set up administration rights: This means that only certain people will be able to change important settings in your system. It will prevent hacking from inside your company and inadvertent administrative errors. It also means that nothing can be installed on your system without authorization.
- Filter access to your data: This will help protect your company from loss of sensitive data.
- Prevent unwanted access: You can also block access to restricted sites with Internet filters, so hackers and employees are unable to upload or download data in storage clouds.
- Disable USB ports: This will prevent anyone using them to upload malicious data.
- Ensure strict password policies are in place: Have passwords changed regularly, make sure they are not too simple. Always include uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols.
- Encrypt ultra-sensitive information: It’s possible to secure files, folders and whole drives with encryption. Make sure sensitive information is highly guarded.
- Enable multifactor authentication: This means each user will have to use additional means of authentication to log in to your system as well as a password, such as a PIN or a physical dongle.
- Protect your password reset: This is an often overlooked security measure that is very important because hackers often like to exploit it. Almost all web servers have a password reset mechanism. It pays to review your hint sections and change them regularly to prevent attacks.
Don’t forget, hackers are constantly on the prowl and you need to be constantly vigilant to prevent them taking over your company. Following these tips for protection will help reduce your company’s vulnerability to cyberattack and will give you, your employees and your clients’ peace of mind.