Did you know that cybercrime is now the number one global threat to businesses? Cybersecurity Ventures forecasts that cybercrime “will cost the world $10.5 trillion annually by 2025.” That’s more than the total GDP of France, Italy, or Brazil, and the 3rd world largest after the US and China! So, what can you do to protect your business from these threats?
This blog post will discuss the seven types of cybersecurity threats and how to mitigate those threats. We’ll also provide a solution at the end so you can learn more about Managed Cybersecurity solutions and how they can help protect your business.
Why Would Hackers Attack My Business, and How?
You may be thinking that no one would hack your small (or not so small) business. But the reality is, there are many reasons why a hacker might target your business. They could be looking for financial information, such as credit card numbers or bank account details. They might want to steal your company’s intellectual property, such as trade secrets or patented technology. Or they could simply be looking to cause damage by crashing your website or deleting your data.
There are many ways a hacker can attack your business, but some of the most common include:
- Phishing attacks, where they send you an email or text message that looks like it’s from a legitimate source but is a way to collect your personal information.
- Viruses and malware: These programs can damage your computer or steal your data. They can be installed without your knowledge, usually by clicking on a malicious link or attachment.
- Social engineering attacks trick you into giving them confidential information by pretending to be from a legitimate company or organization.
What is Cybersecurity?
Cybersecurity is the practice of protecting your computer networks and user data from unauthorized access or theft. It involves using various techniques to secure your systems, including antivirus software, firewalls, and password protection. Cybersecurity also includes measures to protect your online privacy, such as encryption and anonymity tools.
What are Cybersecurity Threats?
Cybersecurity threats are any attacks or vulnerabilities that can be used to steal or damage your computer networks or user data. They come in many different forms, from simple viruses and malware to sophisticated phishing schemes and social engineering attacks.
There are many different types of cybersecurity threats, but here are the seven most common types of threats:
Cybersecurity Threat #1: Malware
Malware is a term used to describe harmful software, including viruses, Trojans, and ransomware. It can be installed on your computer without your knowledge, often by clicking on a malicious link or attachment in an email. Malware can damage your computer or steal your data, and it can be challenging to remove once it’s installed.
What you can do to prevent Malware for your organization: Have a good firewall installed and properly configured for your entire office with active security services such as network-level antivirus. Ensure that every computer and server has active Antivirus software. One of your best defenses is also User Awareness Security Training, knowing what to watch out for in emails so as to not click on malicious links and attachments.
a COUPLE of GURUS provides User Awareness Security Training to our clients and also installs another breach detection layer of security in addition to antivirus on all computers and servers.
Cybersecurity Threat #2: Phishing Attacks
Phishing is a form of cyberattack in which victims are tricked into providing confidential data, such as login passwords or banking information, through the use of bogus emails or websites. Cybercriminals will often impersonate a trusted entity, such as a bank or government agency, to convince victims to hand over their data.
Once the cybercriminal has the victim’s information, they can access their accounts or commit fraud. Phishing attacks are a severe threat to businesses and can have a devastating impact. They can be used to steal sensitive data, such as login credentials or financial information, or inject malware onto systems.
What you can do to prevent phishing attacks for your organization: There isn’t much that you can do to prevent someone from calling you with an attempt to phish, so User Awareness Security Training is your best defense here. Knowing that trusted and legitimate organizations will never call asking for your password or sensitive information over the phone or email. Training will also help in identifying bogus emails and websites.
Cybersecurity Threat #3: Denial of Service (DoS) Attacks
A Denial of Service (DoS) attack attempts to make a computer or network unavailable (go offline or crash) by flooding it with network traffic or requests for data. Black hat hackers execute these attacks to disable systems or networks, typically for financial gain or to cause disruption. DoS attacks can be carried out using a single computer or multiple computers under the control of a botnet—a network of internet-connected devices that have been infected with malware and can be controlled by a cybercriminal.
There are two types of DoS attacks:
- A Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack is when many compromised systems are used to target a single system or network. This type of attack can be challenging to defend against, as the volume of traffic generated can be overwhelming.
- A Reflection Denial of Service (RDoS) attack is when a malicious actor sends requests to a victim from other systems they control. These requests are designed to appear as if they’re coming from the victim, causing them to overload and crash.
What you can do to prevent Denial of Service attacks for your organization: DoS attacks are among the most common cyberattacks and can be very difficult to defend against. Businesses need to have a robust cybersecurity infrastructure to protect themselves from these attacks. Cybersecurity experts such a COUPLE of GURUS can help identify vulnerabilities and implement defenses to protect against DoS attacks with a Cyber Risk and Security Assessment.
Cybersecurity Threat #4: Man in the Middle
A Man in the Middle (MitM) attack is a cyberattack that allows an attacker to intercept and decrypt communication between two parties who believe they are securely communicating. The attacker sits in the middle of the communication, eavesdropping on and manipulating the data passing between the two parties.
MitM attacks can be carried out in several ways, but all involve the attacker intercepting and redirecting traffic to a server they control. This can be done by using malware to infect a computer or network or exploiting software or hardware vulnerabilities. Once the attacker has control of the communication, they can eavesdrop on it, record it, or even modify it.
MitM attacks can have a devastating impact and be used to steal sensitive data, such as login credentials or financial information, or inject malware onto systems.
What you can do to prevent Man in the Middle attacks for your organization: Make sure every computer and server has antivirus and ensure that you are enforcing strong passwords for all your users. Have Multi-Factor Authentication (also called Two Factor Authentication, or MFA/2FA for short) enabled for all users of services such as Microsoft 365. User Awareness Security Training for all users will also help in identifying any communication that may seem legitimate but is not.
For regulated organizations such as HIPAA and CMMC manufacturers or contractors, having SIEM (Security Information and Event Management) monitoring with a SOC (Security Operations Center) will also help in identifying and taking action against any potential breaches.
Cybersecurity Threat #5: SQL Injections
SQL injection is a type of cyberattack that uses malicious code to exploit vulnerabilities in websites or applications that use SQL databases. Cybercriminals can use SQL injections to insert malicious code into database queries, which the database server can then execute. Doing so allows them to access sensitive data, such as login credentials or financial information, or inject malware onto systems.
SQL injections are also a severe threat to businesses that can have a devastating impact. Much like the others, this attack can be used to steal sensitive data, such as login credentials or financial information, or inject malware onto systems.
What you can do to prevent SQL Injection attacks for your organization: In addition to a network-level firewall and antivirus/breach-detection agents on all computers and servers, another good security level to add for this type of attack would be Zero Trust software to stop any untrusted or unapproved scripts from executing. Keeping all systems patched and up-to-date will also help in preventing SQL injections from system vulnerabilities.
Cybersecurity Threat #6: Malware Emotet
One of the most common types of malware is called Emotet. It’s a virus, a trojan, that can be used to steal your personal information, including credit card numbers and bank account details. Emotet can also be used to install other viruses and malware on your computer and is particularly dangerous because it can spread quickly from computer to computer, making it difficult to stop.
The Emotet malware is primarily spread through very convincing spam emails, where a victim is tricked into clicking a link and unwittingly initiates the malware download.
What you can do to prevent Emotet malware for your organization: Make sure that every computer and server has antivirus and additionally breach-detection software (which a COUPLE of GURUS provides to it’s clients). Antivirus software that scans emails will also help in preventing malicious downloads if a link is accidentally clicked. User Awareness Security Training is very important to help users identify malicious emails and prevent clicking of malicious links.
Cybersecurity Threat #7: Cross-Site Scripting
Cross-site scripting (XSS) is a cyberattack that allows an attacker to inject malicious code into webpages viewed by other users. When a user visits a web page containing the malicious code, their browser executes it. The code allows the attacker to access sensitive data, such as login credentials or financial information.
This type of attack is often used to steal user data and inject malware or ransomware into a system. XSS attacks are challenging to detect and can remain active for long periods, making them a serious threat to businesses.
What you can do to prevent Cross-Site Scripting attacks for your organization: Make sure you have a good and active network-level firewall for your organization with active security services such as antivirus. A good firewall will also identify malicious websites and prevent your browser from loading it. Ensure that every computer and server has active antivirus and breach detection as well. Zero Trust software can also help in preventing XSS attacks.
Preventing Cybersecurity Attacks
In a nutshell, to help prevent all these types of cybersecurity attacks and more, you’ll want to make sure you have these things in place for your entire organization:
- A network-level firewall with active protection services such as network-level antivirus
- Antivirus and breach-detection on all your computers and servers
- A system in place to verify all assets and endpoints are being patched and updated regularly
- Enforcement of strong passwords and Multi-Factor Authentication
- Daily or Incremental backups of critical endpoints and all data
- User Awareness Security Training for all users
In addition, these other items can further secure your organization and help with any regulatory compliance such as NIST/HIPAA/CMMC:
- Zero Trust software
- SIEM monitoring with a SOC
If you’re not sure that your business is adequately protected against cybersecurity threats, or if you don’t have the time or resources to do it yourself, then Managed Cybersecurity services might be a good solution for you. With Managed Cybersecurity, you can outsource all or part of your cybersecurity needs to a third-party provider, such as a COUPLE of GURUS.
This service can include everything from monitoring your systems for threats to managing your passwords and user data. Managed Cybersecurity providers can also help you recover from a cyberattack by restoring lost data and repairing damaged systems.
Managed Cybersecurity with a COUPLE of GURUS
Managed Cybersecurity services can help protect your business from cyber attacks by identifying and mitigating vulnerabilities in your organization.
By understanding the types of cyber threats your business faces, you can take steps to protect yourself from them. Cybersecurity is an integral part of any business plan and should not be ignored. Contact us today to learn more.