How to protect yourself and your business from cyberattacks

The present state of health promotes a rise in cyber-attacks, as a result of widespread telework and more linked households. What is the solution? Utilize a complete security suite to safeguard your computer.

Cyber-attacks are not abating in the face of the COVID-19 issue; on the contrary, they are intensifying. However, all indications point to a rise in risks to the security of people and companies alike, as sophisticated malware such as ransomware becomes more prevalent.

From where it is more critical than ever to protect oneself and to do so with a solution that goes beyond simple antivirus protection to ensure the confidentiality, personal data, and performance of one’s devices, a VPN can provide effective protection against tracking via modules such as pare-fire, anti-phishing, and anti-ransomware tools. Today, tools like NordVPN assist in defending against such assaults.

Why are cyberattacks becoming more prevalent?

One would assume that as operating systems become more secure and users become more aware of the risks of viruses and other malware, cyber-attacks would tend to diminish. However, this is not the case, as they are growing rather than stagnating.

How are we going to account for this? Current events and COVID issues have had a significant influence on this outburst. Successive confinement and, more broadly, health precautions have institutionalized teleworking in a wide variety of industries. And, although an administration or a business may offer certified and safe hardware, this is not always the case, and many people operate from their own computers, which are not always secure. Thus, professional activity is added to the many activities we currently do daily: shopping, administrative processes, streaming entertainment, social media contact… By using an increasing number of digital tools, we expose ourselves to threats such as phishing, credit card fraud, and ransomware, which encrypts user data.

This environment pushes us to defend ourselves: how can we evade hackers attempting to retrieve our personal and financial information?

Time is running out to safeguard your company in case of a cyberattack.

Chains of assault, which were before just a theoretical concept, have become a reality.

Additionally, the introduction of cryptocurrency has enabled attackers to quickly monetize data. They are persistent in their search for and exploitation of weaknesses in systems and networks, then use encryption and extortion to obtain access to and monetize business data.

Their approach is to repeatedly attempt to force locks on any door or window until they discover a way in. Assuming that every susceptible machine linked to the internet has already been hacked is not an exaggeration. Any internet system that relies on a connection, susceptible or not, is almost certainly now under a so-called “brute force” assault (attackers are trying countless combinations of usernames and passwords until you find one that works).

Various modes of operation have been seen over the last year: some assaults have been conducted through vulnerabilities in VPN devices, remote access servers, and even file transfer services.

Employees provide hackers with access to their networks by clicking on URLs that mislead them into revealing their credentials or installing harmful malware. If an attacker does not want to manually break into a system, they may instead purchase their access on the Dark Web. The data is then utilized against the business, forcing it to decide whether or not to pay the ransom.

How are cyber thieves organized?

Once an attacker has control of a server or terminal, he or she often follows the following instructions:

  • To begin, configure a control system (command and control) to use the first server as a jumping-off point.
  • Next, using well-known stealth methods, do a rudimentary reconnaissance of the network.
  • To then hack accounts with increased privileges via the use of internal vulnerabilities, flaws, or brute force assaults.
  • Following that, these accounts are exploited to steal data and install backdoors.
  • Finally, the data is encrypted, and a ransom letter is sent, requesting payment in bitcoin in return for the decryption key. There is dubious assurance that the stolen data will remain private.

The majority of companies are taken totally by surprise when they get a ransom demand.

How to safeguard yourself and your company

Commence with the conclusion: the safe

Attackers target data because it is the most readily monetized asset. What are the locations of the most important and dangerous data vaults? Care must be taken to guarantee that sensitive data is stored securely, that only authorized individuals have access to it, and that an unexpected withdrawal may be recognized.

Practice defending yourself against attacks

If thieves have gained access to your bank account and hacked one of your workstations, servers, or gateways, you should attempt to identify the next step of the assault. Can we see the acknowledgment? Is Active Directory experiencing strange activity? Access to data or systems that are unusual? This necessitates the establishment of a baseline of “typical” user behavior.

Increase the amount of force utilized to repel assaults

When it comes to computer security, guessing is out of the question. Any known vulnerability will be the target of an attack effort. Too many IT organizations lack the ability to monitor patch applications. If a website simply needs the input of a username and password, hackers will attempt to guess the necessary combination. Additionally, an inordinate number of companies provide single-factor authentication for online services.

Following this advice increases the likelihood of the business defending itself against skilled and highly motivated attackers. Attempting to keep them at bay is just not feasible. In any event, with the Cloud’s existence and the growth of teleworking, “the outside” is just theoretical data.

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