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Comments Off on This is How You Can Protect Yourself and Your Business From Cyber Attacks

This is How You Can Protect Yourself and Your Business From Cyber Attacks

Posted by Admin | December 16, 2016 | IT Security

The number of breaches are increasing

Cyber security is back in the news with an estimated one billion Yahoo accounts affected by a hacking attack that dates back three years.


“Yahoo is becoming synonymous with data security breaches as it has once again hit the headlines in what has been dubbed the biggest hack in the history of the internet, which dates back to 2013,” says Nigel Griffiths, chief operating officer of IT consultancy Certus TG.

“The data accessed included information such as passwords, names, phone numbers and emails, and it’s shocking that the one billion affected users have been none the wiser about the breach until now. Who knows what the culprits of this cyber-attack have done with the information.”

A report published earlier this year by the National Crime Agency (NCA) revealed a staggering number of UK businesses have fallen victim to international cybercriminals over the past year, with 2.46 million cyber incidents and 700,000 fraud cases reported in 2015.

But another a report revealed that just 2% of large businesses include cyber security in their insurance portfolio, with the percentage estimated to be a lot lower in smaller businesses, despite 60% suffering a breach in cyber security last year.

There has never been a more important time to prepare yourself against the threat of a cyber attack.

7 ways to protect you and your business

Mr Griffiths gives seven top tips for businesses on how to protect themselves against cyber attacks.


1. Protect your supply chain

Cyber criminals have recognised that trying to penetrate the security defences of big companies is often like trying to get into Fort Knox and, as a result, has seen them turn their attention to targeting a business’s supply chain as a way in through the back door. As the saying goes, you’re only as strong as your weakest link.

So to ensure that the supply chain stays cyber safe and not open to attack, businesses need to identify what information is desirable to hackers so that it can be appropriately protected, and monitor online activity to ensure suspicious activity is picked up at the earliest opportunity to avoid a problem which could lead to catastrophic consequences for a business.”

2. Get your head in the Cloud

Cloud encryption systems are becoming a commonplace and cost-effective method to protect business data from external attacks.

As the information is encoded using a complex algorithm, which can only be decoded using an encryption key, hackers find it difficult to crack the data. While it is still possible for hackers to do this, they do not generally have access to the amount of computer processing power they would need to do so.”

3. Create a strong password

One of the first steps for businesses is to ensure strong passwords are used on corporate devices to protect data, but many fail to do this and allow employees to opt for obvious passwords, like the name of a family pet or favourite football team.

Businesses must remember that the general rule is the longer and the more creative the password, the better.

Using a mixture of numbers, upper and lowercase letters, and special characters integrated into random words will make it harder for cybercriminals to hack into corporate devices.”

4. Protect your systems against malware

Businesses are often vulnerable to malicious software which can infect computers through websites and email, so installing and updating security software packages with firewalls, anti-virus and anti-malware that will instantly detect, identify and block new and emerging threats, will provide a first line of defence against cyberattacks.”

5. Have a cyber consultancy to hand

Having a security professional to hand in a business can be hugely beneficial, as they can take immediate action to tackle cyberattacks and minimise risk to a business.

It is also vital that a business and its IT security provider have contingency plans and recovery procedures in place ready to mobilise should a security breach occur.”

6. Back up your data

The cyber security landscape is ever-changing, so businesses must invest time and money into developing robust IT strategies and finding ways to safely store and backup data, so that trophy information is safe from the hands of cybercriminals.

One way of achieving this is by using managed hosting services and storing data in heavily protected centres to safeguard a company’s sensitive information from cyberattacks.”

7. Educate your employees

Some employees may not be aware of the sensitivity of the data they have access to, so educating them on this and how to identify potential IT threats is vital in the fight to reduce the risk of businesses falling victim to cybercrime.

It is also in the best interest of a business for rules and guidelines on how to handle sensitive data, to be published throughout a business and its supply chain, to minimise cyber risks.”

Personal protection

The UK is failing to keep up with online fraud, and consumers are increasingly being left vulnerable to scams, unfair trading, and unsafe goods, according to the National Audit Office (NAO).


The NAO estimated that consumers lost at least £14.8 billion to fraud last year, of which £4.2 billion is thought to be hidden from crime such as mass marketing fraud and counterfeit goods.

Consumer protection cost around £165 million over the year, with local Trading Standards services receiving around £124 million and Citizens Advice receiving £18 million, the NAO calculated.

But it said the system as a whole “has not yet demonstrated that it provides value for money in protecting consumers from modern scams, unfair trading, and unsafe goods”.

Source: walesonline

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