You might’ve heard of cybercrime or cybersecurity – and been left wondering what it is, how it works – and do you need it. Well, let’s look at everything you need to know.
Cybersecurity, in the most basic terms, is a set of technology and people who work to ensure that businesses are not at risk from internal or external threats to their assets or network.
Cybersecurity is the practice of protecting computers, networks, and data from unauthorized access, use, disclosure, disruption, modification, or destruction. It includes preventing attacks on computer systems, securing data, and monitoring network traffic for suspicious activity.
How does cybersecurity work?
There isn’t just a one size fits all option for cybersecurity – it has layers of protection. Your business needs will be assessed to get the most comprehensive and supportive cybersecurity package. The correct security measures will be implemented based on your business needs.
Digital attacks are becoming increasingly frequent for small and medium businesses, so it’s important you have security measures in place.
Cybersecurity is not just about technology. Instead, it works with employees, creates processes and infrastructures, and offers user education to reduce vulnerabilities and weaknesses in the system. Risk assessment and risk management are also necessary.
Types of Attacks
There are three main categories of cyberattacks: malware, phishing, and social engineering. Malware refers to malicious software designed to steal personal information, damage a system, or disrupt operations. Phishing involves sending emails with links or attachments that appear legitimate, but actually lead users to websites where they enter sensitive information such as usernames and passwords. Social engineering is when people trick others into giving up confidential information.
Why You Need To Be Concerned About Cybersecurity
It’s not just businesses that need to worry about cybersecurity; individuals also need to take steps to protect themselves. Hackers often use social media accounts to gain access to other online services. If you use Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or any other service, make sure you log out after each session. Also, keep your operating systems updated and install security patches regularly.
The threat of cybersecurity has become increasingly important because hackers are becoming more sophisticated and using new methods to attack organizations. Hackers can steal information, disrupt operations, and cause damage to businesses and individuals. In fact, according to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the number of successful cyberattacks increased by nearly 50 percent between 2014 and 2015.
Why is cybersecurity important?
More people are connected as our society becomes more reliant on technology and the internet. The downside to this hyper-connectivity is that it means that cybercriminals now have more access to personal and business data than ever before.
Data leaks can result in clients, customers, and staff having their private information stolen and, in some cases, published. The information includes credit card information, banking information, social security numbers, and other private details.
One of the most important things about cybercrime is that the true numbers are not accounted for since many breaches happen without the business or person in question realizing it.
What are the different types of cybersecurity?
Cybersecurity systems must be able to identify, investigate, and fix these issues to prevent a hacker or malicious software from taking advantage of potential gaps and vulnerabilities in the system. So there is a range of security options to ensure your business has what it needs.
Almost all cloud systems and applications, like Microsoft, Google, and AWS, use cloud security to help protect their users. Cloud security is essential, with more companies relying on cloud systems than ever.
Hardware and software systems are specifically designed to meet the needs of a business. These systems protect the infrastructure and network from unauthorized access, disruptions, and misuse – by internal and external threats.
More businesses than ever use mobile devices like laptops, tablets, and smartphones. Mobile security measures can be implemented to protect any information that travels between the devices.
Application security refers to integrating numerous defence’s into commercial software and services to safeguard against various risks. Designing secure applications is necessary for this kind of cybersecurity to reduce unauthorized modification or access.
Bespoke data storage systems are designed and implemented to ensure that all information is secure.
What are the top cybersecurity threats that need to be managed?
Alongside the cybersecurity types, some threats are the most common and the most dangerous for those who have a business.
Botnets are incredibly dangerous for businesses. They comprise a network of infected computers, allowing a single attack to use multiple devices at once. Most often, these take the form of a DDoS attack, causing the system to crash because it is overloaded with requests.
In 2021 Botnets made up over half of the reported attacks. DDoS attacks cause critical systems to shut down, which can last for days.
We’d like to think that all of our staff have the company’s best interests in mind and that all cyberattacks come from external sources. However, internal cyberattacks are possible, and not only that – they can be the most dangerous. Insider threats can be innocent when untrained employees do something, or they can be intentional. Since employees often have some level of access to the systems, they can do extreme damage.
Often staff can fall victim to a phishing scam and unintentionally put the network and business at risk.
The first security threat comes from malware – even though it is declining, it is the more prolific form of cyber attack. Malware is short for malicious software and can be as short as a line of code or complete programs that offer unauthorized access.
Ransomware, spyware, trojans, and viruses are all classed as malware. It might look like pop-ups, or it could be stealing your information.
Man in the Middle attacks is a form of listening to information as it travels from destination to destination. What makes these attacks particularly vicious is that the information will reach its destination looking seemingly untouched, but it has been copied before it has reached its recipient.
MITM can happen through fake websites, compromised Wi-Fi networks, and malware. Although they are not as common as some of the other attacks, they are hard to detect and, over time, can collect a lot of information and do a lot of damage.
Phishing scams are particularly malicious because they rely on human error and vulnerabilities. They trick people into handing over information willingly, which can often be sensitive information like payment and personal details.
Phishing is non-discriminate and will target anyone; even those who consider themselves savvy can get caught out.
Cybersecurity is a must for all businesses, and with increased cyberattacks on even the smallest business, it pays to be aware of what it is and how it can help you. Assessing what you need now and in the future will give you a robust cybersecurity plan to protect your business for years to come.
Understanding what cybersecurity is and how it works can go much of the way to making smart business decisions for the future of your business.
If cyber security sees like a complete minefield and you’ve no idea how to start protecting yourself or your business please do reach out to our team at Technology Support 24/7. We are here to answer questions or offer any advice to secure your business, get in touch here today.