The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about a sea of changes in the way we live our lives. With new practices like remote working becoming the new norm, there has also been a systemic change in the way we deal with cybersecurity threats. In 2021 alone, the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center received a staggering 847,376 complaints from Americans, up 7% from 2020. The potential losses for these complaints exceeded a whopping $6.9 billion. 1
With remote work here to stay, cyberattacks are likely to increase exponentially in the foreseeable future. To make matters worse, advancements in business technology have piqued the interest of cybercriminals to target valuable business data. In such trying circumstances, building your cyber resilience and proactively safeguarding your digital assets is the need of the hour.
Businesses handling sensitive data have always faced the challenge of maintaining cybersecurity. A single breach could result in catastrophic consequences that question the very existence of the business. With the sudden shift towards remote working, this challenge has become even more difficult for security teams to overcome. Remote working networks pose potential safety hazard, while trivial human errors may also expose your IT network to risks during remote work.
A recent survey indicated that almost 20% of organizations attributed their data breaches to remote work, resulting in losses of $4.96 million, 15% more than the average breach. 2 Early detection of breaches is also a significant issue for IT security teams. In 2021, it took an average of 212 days to identify a breach, and 75 days to contain it, making the total lifecycle of the breach 287 days. 2 Are you confident that your cybersecurity measures are robust enough to fend off potential attacks?
- Phishing attacks: Despite efforts to educate employees, phishing emails remain a significant threat to businesses globally. Attackers leverage COVID-19 related messaging to create sense of urgency, enticing users to click on links that lead to malware or viruses that steal sensitive information.
- Ransomware: Targeted ransomware attacks have surged, with 92.7% increase in 2021 compared to 2020. 3 These attacks involve holding on organization’s critical data for ransom, with millions paid annually to hackers. However, there is no guarantee that the data will be returned even after payment.
- Cloud jacking: The cloud’s increased use as a data storage solution has made it a prime target for attacks. Cloud hijacking occurs in two ways: inserting malicious code into third-party cloud libraries or injecting code directly into cloud platforms. Although public cloud vendors provide infrastructure, data security responsibility mostly rests with the users.
- Man-in-the-middle attack: Hackers can intercept two-party transactions occurring over public networks and filter and steal data. Remote workers using public networks are particularly vulnerable to these attacks.
- Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS0 attacks: This type of attack manipulates a network’s traffic to exhaust its resources, rendering it unusable to legitimate users. Attackers can then send botnets to infiltrate and manipulate the network.
Irrespective of their size, all organizations must prioritize security readiness. It is crucial to have an action plan in place to handle potential security incidents and have a trusted MSP partner that can monitor your IT infrastructure and alert you to any unusual activity.
Investing in advanced cybersecurity solutions is a small price to pay compared to losing critical data or paying a large ransom. Implementing best practices such as multi-factor authentications, DNS filtering, disk encryption, and firewall protection can go a long way in safeguarding your organization’s data.
If these cybersecurity measures seem overwhelming, do not worry. Our checklist can help you identify vulnerabilities in your network and provide you with the necessary tools and techniques to protect your data effectively. Click here to receive your own copy.