Cybercrime: Evolving Methodology and Prevention

In 2016, one third of UK businesses and one half of all global small businesses suffered from cybercrime. It is likely this number is far higher as many businesses don’t report cyber attacks to avoid reputation damage. Hackers can steal money or employee, customer and supplier details. A data breach can damage your relationship with employees, customers and vendors as seen in recent months with many global, high profile and destructive data breaches. Building up your business cybersecurity is imperative. As of 25th May 2018, The EU General Data Protection Regulation will come into place and companies found to be in breach of regulation can expect heavy fines. This new regulation has the potential to cripple UK businesses who are not cyber secure. Below is an outline of the common types of cyber crime affecting businesses today, with advice on best practice for preventing security breaches and protecting your data.

TROJAN HORSE

A Trojan Horse will attempt to hack into your computer by misleading you of its true intent. One of the most deceptive types of Trojan Horse is a program that claims to rid your computer of viruses but instead introduces viruses onto your computer.

 RANSOMWARE

Ransomware is a type of malicious software, billed as the top malware variant in the Crimewatch category 2016. When it attacks, it encrypts your data or just locks you out of the device altogether, and then the sender demands a ransom to free your data / device. Even if you pay the ransom there is no guarantee your data or device will be retrieved. The headline-making WannaCry ransomware attack, will probably be marked as one of the most notorious cyber attacks of the year, hitting over 150 countries and affecting hundreds of thousands of organisation’s worldwide.

 TIME BOMB VIRUS

A Time Bomb virus acts with malicious intent just like any other virus, however, it has been designed to stop or start functioning after a predetermined date or time is reached. This functionality not only makes it one of the more sophisticated types of cybercrimes, but also one of the hardest to detect. Often, Time Bomb viruses are uploaded internally within an organisation.

PHISHING

Phishing is one of the most common types of cybercrimes, it comes in the form of a seemingly harmless e-mail with hidden malicious intent. The sender, often disguised as a trustworthy entity, will attempt to extract information such as usernames, passwords and bank details. If information is handed over it will be used in a fraudulent and illegal manner, often in the form of identity theft.

MACRO MALWARE

A few years ago, Macro Malware seemed to be a thing of the past. However, recently it has seen an increase in popularity. This virus runs on a programme, usually Microsoft Office and it will corrupt the programme so that a sequence of unwanted events happens whenever you open the programme. This spreads fast as people usually trust an Excel or Word document in their inbox.

CYBER SECURITY ADVICE AND BEST PRACTICE

  • Regularly install and update security software on desktop, laptops and mobile devices
  • Back up your data regularly
  • Use encryption and passwords to protect all information
  • Use strong unique password security with two step authentication
  • Secure your Wifi so only employees can access
  • Train your team on cybersecurity and create a policy for the business
  • Pause and reflect, a cyber criminal will always try to rush you
  • Don’t open attachments or click on links from an unknown source
  • Check for the ‘S’ in the ‘HTTPS’, this demonstrates a secure network
  • Limit Access and segregate control, not everyone needs access to everything
  • Remember the three P’s – Policies, Procedures & Precaution

Get in touch with us today to see how we can help secure your business.