Cyber security threats should never be taken lightly. Whether it’s a data breach resulting in the compromise of personal information or an intrusion into financial, corporate, or government networks, cyber security threats are everywhere. In fact, the threats are so pervasive that the FBI and other government agencies have said that cyber security and cyber attacks are a top priority for law enforcement. Unfortunately, only 38% of global organizations claim that they’re prepared to handle a sophisticated cyber attack.
So, we thought that there’s no better time to talk about the importance of cyber security than during National Cyber Security Awareness Month. To ensure that your business is protected, we’re discussing the three biggest cyber security threats: ransomware, business email compromise (BEC), and intellectual property theft.
Ransomware is a type of malware that can infect computers. It works by restricting user access to files or threatening permanent destruction unless a ransom is paid. Almost any organization—hospitals, schools, government agencies, small and large businesses—can be infected by ransomware. It’s responsible for a loss of access to irreplaceable items as well as disruption of regular operations and financial losses. It also has the potential to harm your business’s reputation through the loss of sensitive or proprietary information.
Although ransomware isn’t a new cyber security threat, since 2015, it has seen a large increase in use. So how do you protect against ransomware? It’s difficult to detect a compromise before it’s too late, so the best thing you can do is prevent an attack and create a solid business continuity plan. At SentinelOne, we offer $1 million in guaranteed ransomware protection if you use our software.
Business Email Compromise (BEC)
BEC scams have impacted businesses across the U.S. for years. In fact, they’ve been reported in all 50 states and in 100 countries worldwide. Worse yet, BEC scams have been responsible for more than $3 billion in losses. In the past, this type of fraud was so successful because it was so simple, but now the scams are becoming far more sophisticated. So, what exactly is a BEC cyber security threat?
BEC is a type of payment fraud that uses legitimate business email accounts to conduct unauthorized wire transfers. Basically, through social engineering or malware, a criminal gains access to a company’s email account and then sends wire transfer instructions to their targets. To protect your company, your IT team needs to be aware of the BEC threat and take preventative actions including:
- Avoiding the use of free, web-based email accounts, which are more susceptible to hacking.
- Creating an intrusion detection system that flags emails with extensions that are similar to a company email but not identical.
- Adding two-step verification processes for financial and personnel information.
- Implementing a malware detection software and prevention software.
Intellectual Property Theft
Intellectual property theft is a huge cyber security threat to your company’s ideas, inventions, and creative expressions. Intellectual property includes everything from trade secrets to proprietary products, software, and files. Legitimate businesses can lose billions of dollars, suffer damaged reputations, and lose valuable customers thanks to acts of intellectual property theft.
To protect your intellectual property assets, there are a few things you can do:
- Educate your team on the difference between trademarks, copyrights, patents, and trade secrets.
- Patent what’s important to you and to others.
- Work with an attorney who specializes in intellectual property.
- Conduct an audit to identify all your registered and unregistered trademarks and copyrights.
- Invest in well-written non-disclosure agreements (NDA).
- Protect your computers from hackers, unscrupulous competitors, and other criminals using endpoint protection software.
There’s no better time to review your company’s cyber security threats and to implement a detection, prevention, and remediation plan than during National Cyber Security Awareness Month. Let us help your business take the next step in protection. Contact the SentinelOne team today.