Cybersecurity is a never-ending battle. Each side continues to “up the ante” when it comes to the breach of networks and the information they contain.
Anti-malware programs start using artificial intelligence, then so do the hackers creating malware. It’s the nature of data security. But in this battle, those that are prepared and stay vigilant are the ones that reduce their risk of suffering a costly data breach.
In just the first 6 months of 2019, there were 4.1 billion records compromised in data breaches. And no size company or network is immune. Hackers are just as happy going after residential and small business networks as they are large corporate ones.
Cyberattacks cost businesses an average of $200,000 each attack.
The best ways to defend against both old and new threats include adopting best practices when it comes to cybersecurity and ensuring your network is protected with a managed IT services plan. These plans can cover both business and residential networks and are very affordable.
We’ll include several best practices below as we discuss the major cyber threats that you need to watch out for in 2020.
Watch Out for These Online Threats Coming Your Way
Knowledge is power and being aware of the types of attacks that are becoming more popular and new twists on old favorites can help you identify an attack and guard against it.
Here are the biggest threats that should be on your radar in the coming year.
Threats to your network from the inside is consistently listed by security organizations as a big one to watch out for in 2020. They’re particularly dangerous because they tend to bypass standard security measures.
And this doesn’t necessarily mean it has to be a rogue employee (although it can).
An insider threat can also be a hacker that’s gained access to an admin password and is able to log in to your system as an employee. Stolen login credentials for an Office 365 account can sell for anywhere between $5-$100 on the Dark Web.
It can also be a contractor that’s been given temporary access to your system, and whether on purpose or not causes your network to become compromised.
You can help protect against insider threats by using the policy of “least privilege” and only give users the minimum system privileges required for their daily tasks. Software that looks for unusual behavior, rather than just unauthorized access can also be helpful in spotting attacks facilitated by a legitimate user login.
Phishing Hybrids, Like Smishing
Phishing has been a successful way of getting unsuspecting email users to click on a malicious link or download a virus-laden attachment. This has brought about new software to help detect phishing emails and stop them from getting to users, and it’s also caused phishing scammers to employ other methods of attack.
One method that’s growing in popularity is called Smishing, which is social phishing. The same deceptive tactics are used to get a user to download malware or compromise their login credentials, but instead of by email, it’s being done by direct message over apps like Facebook, WhatsApp, Slack, and LinkedIn.
Ways to safeguard against Smishing are through user education so people know to watch out for phishing messages sent over popular social apps, and by employing to use of a web protection tool that can stop a malicious site from downloading malware after the link is clicked and alert the user in real-time.
Malware on Mobile Devices
Mobile devices are not immune to malware and hackers have picked up on the fact that people are using their smartphones more and more, and thus an emerging threat is mobile malware.
Attacks have been dramatically increasing throughout 2019, with a rise of 50% in cyberattacks targeting smartphones this year as compared to last year.
If you don’t already have an anti-malware application on your smartphone, it’s time to get one to help protect against this growing threat.
Hacked Smart Devices
During December 2019, there was a big story in the media about an 8-year old being spoken to by a hacker that had broken in to the family’s new Ring security camera that was set up in their child’s room.
Unfortunately, these stories are becoming more prevalent as more smart gadgets, like Amazon Echo and Ring, are taking up residence in people’s homes and offices.
In the excitement of setting them up, people often don’t take the proper security precautions of changing device names and passwords from the defaults, which makes them an easy target for criminals using them to gain access to other network connected devices.
Best practices to adopt for smart devices include immediately changing the default name and password during setup, ensuring they’re regularly updated to apply security patches, and including them in your overall cybersecurity plan.
Keep Your Devices Secure from Emerging Threats
A managed IT services plan from Cris’s Tech Repair can ensure your network and devices are protected from current and emerging threats and keep everything working efficiently.
Sign up for a plan today by calling 561-985-4961 or contacting us online.